There’s an app for that…

There is a new App Design course offered at both Fort Riley Middle School and Junction City Middle School this year. Start up funds for this course were paid for out of DoDea grant funds and Achieving Excellence through STEM. The start up included partnership and support from Project Lead the Way which offers courses that are considered courses of rigor in the USD 475 AVID program. These courses are part of the districts roadmap to building a kindergarten through twelfth-grade computer science program.

The App Design courses are instructed by Mr. Laughlin at Junction City Middle School and Mr. Norton at Fort Riley Middle School. Both instructors were sent to Wichita over the summer to learn about the rigorous programs and process that they would use this year. The instructions for the course are on the Project Lead the Way instruction page and then the students use MIT Applicator 2 as the emulator to test and run the mobile apps that they create in the class.

When I grow up I want to do coding and make apps that give people help like on the practice app that we did. We did one on measles and meningitis to let people know if they have it. I would like to do that. -Mariah Parrot

Programming jobs are fast growing, 50% faster than the market overall. In general, programming jobs are growing 12% faster than the market average. Seven million job openings in 2015 were in occupations which value coding skills. This corresponds to 20% of “career track” jobs, defined as those which pay a national living wage of at least $15 per hour.

Coding skills are of value to candidates across five major job categories:

  • Information Technology (IT) worker
  • Data Analysts
  • Artists and Designers
  • Engineers
  • Scientists

I did coding a couple years ago and really enjoyed it. I thought if I came here with Mr. Laughlin, that I would like Computers this year. I would like to learn more experienced coding so that I can learn to code my own game. -Neil Crowley

By providing these courses at each middle school, the hope is that more students will be interested and prepared to join the USD 475 Web and Digital Design Pathway at Junction City High School.

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