Last week, NewTechKids wrapped up its 2019 summer camps for kids ages 7-12, taught in a combination of Dutch and English.

What made this year’s summer camps so special was our new collaboration with the Amsterdam Public Library’s Maakplaats 021 (Maker Space 021) initiative. Our teaching teams worked together to develop two, hybrid summer camps. The format was as follows: mornings focused on computer science, programming and robotics while afternoons focused on design thinking applied to digital fabrication (3D printing, laser cutting, digital engraving).

During the first camp, kids  became members of Division Q, a secret group of technologists responsible for using clues to solve challenges. In addition to designing a variety of spy robots, kids designed logos and etched them on glasses and created spy gadgets. The second camp explored turning traditional games and how to turn them into robot versions. Kids created domino destroyer robots as well as automated pinball machines before creating their own games and making their own game accessories.

Deborah Carter, Founder of NewTechKids, says, “These new hybrid programs reflect NewTechKids’ strategic move into technology education which focuses on critical thinking and creativity skills rather than just technical skills. In adapting our focus, we were able to attract more girls while also teaching computer science, programming and design concepts in an even more engaging manner. Design is becoming an increasingly important part of technology and we’re keen to help kids acquire solid skills within structured computer science education.”

José Remijn, Maakplaats 021 Educator, adds, “It’s not just about on-screen programming. Like NewTechKids, we believe in providing kids with an environment in which they can experience technology education through a combination of designing, making and programming with tangible objects. We’re very pleased with how our two joint summer camps went and look forward to offering more during the school holidays.”

NewTechKids’ next hybrid program with Maakplaats 021 will take place during the 2019 Herftsvakantie (Fall School Vacation) from October 21-25, 2019. Register here.

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