FHSD Middle School Students Create Mobile Apps

Posted on 07/16/2019
FHSD middle school student uses a color spectrum to make music during App Camp

To close out a successful 2019 Summer School camp schedule, the middle school App Camp students adventured through the world of coding and app development. The students completed a variety of tasks throughout the camp to learn how to code. By the end of the week, they had the opportunity to create an application of their own that could be published on the Google Play Store.

Students participate in Harry Potter coding activity during App CampTo practice coding, the students participated in a variety of challenges. In one activity, the students used Harry Potter wands to solve coding challenges, while in another, students used the color spectrum to make music. “We want the students to understand that they don’t always have to be consumers of technology. They can be creators,” said camp leader Carmen Kenney-Hill. Some students designed a variety of entertainment games similar to versions of Whac-A-Mole or Pong. Others developed applications that could solve problems, such as a product that would assist individuals who experience hearing loss.

Kyle Barker, a seventh grader at Barnwell Middle School, hopes to work in application development one day. “This camp is teaching me how challenging it can be in real life when you are designing an application for more than one person. It’s showing me what’s expected for it.” Barker appreciated the opportunity to create a product that could be published online. “I’m working on a game right now that is going to be like Space Invaders. You have a rocket and you try to shoot some alien ships down.”

Students work on their computers during App CampDesiree Smith, an eighth grader at Bryan Middle School, discovered a love for game design in sixth grade when she drew her own 3D character. With a desire to become a concept artist one day, Smith understands the importance of the App Camp. “The industry for games and apps, in general, is growing, so we need kids who are prepared for jobs in that area.”

Not only did the camp provide students with the opportunity to create a finished product, but it also gave them a chance to perform at their own pace. “Unlike the other camps we do, it is very customized to the students,” said Kenney-Hill. “They can work as quickly or slowly as they want. They can do challenges if they want or they can just focus on their coding. They have so many options here that don’t exist during the regular school year.” For each task they complete, the students earned points and prizes as an additional incentive to their learning.

After a busy summer of camps in FHSD, many students will be able to apply their new knowledge and experiences when they return to school next month. Meanwhile, let’s enjoy the last few weeks of summer travels, sleeping in, and playing in the sprinkler.

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