The Coder School La Jolla provides computer programming lessons to children ages 7 to 18 offering semi-private sessions with an intimate two-to-one student-coach ratio.
“We are an after-school program,” said Aline Pampalon who, along with her husband Artur, co-owns and operates The Coder School. “What we do in our school is customize everything, and everyone learns the same. We teach based on students’ interests, skill levels, and pace. We believe kids need to be engaged in order to learn. We want them to do things that excite them, which makes our method different than everyone else. We want our education offered to be fun, light, and bright so students will want to come back and learn.”
Code coaching, the school’s main program, is a customized style of learning that pairs kids based on their age and skill level. Kids learn through project-based classes with coaches personalizing each lesson. Instead of following a static curriculum, coaches customize their lessons. Sessions run once or twice weekly, for one hour. Parents can choose among different days and time slots available Monday through Saturday.
Johana Yan, mother of Katie Chen Yan, who is a student at The Coder School La Jolla, said the program there “is one of the best after-school finds in La Jolla. The teachers are spectacular in motivating and stimulating the little minds. This is one of our favorite extracurricular places. I love how excited my daughter is at the end of each lesson and how she loves to share all the work she did with the teacher.”
Added Yan: “The method starts with teaching the students logic, as the building blocks to any coding. With a solid foundation of logic, the child can then easily learn various programming languages and the associated syntax. The method transcends age group and gender, making this a very unique learning experience for all children. As a parent of one of the youngest kids at the school, it has been completely delightful to consistently see the excitement and love for coding grow lesson by lesson.”
The school refers to its Coder Tree, a graphic showing the progression of computer languages taught. Pampalon noted that “Like real trees, our students’ coding journeys are unique from each other, but all require strong foundations and trunks to support their higher, advanced branches.”
Pampalon said they are a franchisee for The Coder School, which has more than 50 locations in the United States and Canada, as well as two others in San Diego. She added the coding program has demonstrated that teaching kids in pairs “makes for a more fun environment because they have a partner who they can share their accomplishments with while building the same projects together. Kids speak many different languages, but they can come together learning with computers as a supplement.”
Pampalon said learning computer languages now can help students advance in the future. “Even if they don’t want to do computer work, learning computer languages will help them a lot with developing logical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving skills,” she said.
Pampalon noted there are no long-term commitments at The Coder School. “Students can start at any time,” she said. She added that, after nearly three years in La Jolla at 7484 La Jolla Blvd. on the corner of Pearl Street, the school now has about 100 students enrolled.
“We’re very proud to be a part of the La Jolla community,” said Pampalon. “It was a process to get to be a part of the community. I really feel that now I am a part of the community.”
THE CODER SCHOOL LA JOLLA
Where: 7484 La Jolla Blvd., 2nd Floor.
Contact: thecoderschool.com, 858-877-1814.