Say the words “video game” and your kids are bound to stop and listen. The local owners of the new Code Ninjas, located at 350 Big Bay Point Rd., know that video games aren’t only fun, but educational. Code Ninjas will serve the local area by teaching children computer coding and problem-solving skills while having fun building video games.
The Barrie location is owned by local entrepreneurs and married couple, Mark and Yao Diephuis and operated by centre director Tim Johnston. Having a background in the pharmaceutical industry, Mark wanted to invest into his own business and wanted to find an emerging concept for children. Seeing the need for year-round STEM education options for kids, and having three children of their own, the Diephuis’ decided to open a centre in their hometown of Barrie.
“STEM education is important for children to learn valuable skills and elevate children’s problem-solving abilities,” said Mark Diephuis. “We’re living in an information-based world, and Code Ninjas will make sure Barrie kids aren’t left behind in regard to this type of education.”
To celebrate the opening of the new centre, Code Ninjas Barrie will have a grand opening event on Feb. 29. Complimentary game building sessions, STEM learning activities and refreshments will be offered for Barrie residents to get familiar with the Code Ninjas curriculum.
Barrie children ages 7-14 can look forward to visiting the new Code Ninjas centre to learn how to code in a fun, safe, and social learning environment where gaming is celebrated, and STEM is cool. Everything about Code Ninjas is built around fun, which keeps kids coming back. But the centre also provides the results that parents are looking for, as their children gain coding and problem-solving skills they’ll need for the jobs of the future.
Code Ninjas’ core program consists of nine belts, just like martial arts. The curriculum is self-paced, but not self-taught; kids get support and encouragement from Code Senseis (instructors) and collaborate with peers as they advance from white to black belt. The program keeps kids motivated with “Belt-Up” celebrations, where they receive colour-coded wristbands to mark their graduation to the next level. By the time a student finishes the program, they will publish a real app in an app store.
At its hundreds of locations across the globe, Code Ninjas offers a variety of opportunities for kids to get involved, including a flexible weeknight drop-in program, camps and Parents Night Out events on weekends.
Code Ninjas founder and CEO David Graham is a professional software developer who previously owned a successful chain of coding camps for adults. After numerous inquiries from parents, Graham realized there was an unmet demand to teach children coding skills. He launched the Code Ninjas brand in 2016.
“Parents want their children to learn the critical skills that they’ll need in the future, but it also has to be fun for kids. Code Ninjas has found that sweet spot where kids have fun and parents see results, and we’re truly excited to bring our unique concept to Barrie and surrounding communities,” said Graham.
For more information about the Barrie Code Ninjas location, please visit here or call 705-503-8200.