A push for coding

Written by Natalie Drouhard, design editor

Intro to Computer Science is a new class offered to high school students by Amazon. This is the first year it has been available and the class focuses on teaching students how to computer code and draw connections that they can use in later careers. 

“My favorite thing about the class is that every day you get a new problem to solve,” senior Wyatt Schulte said. “It’s like solving a puzzle.” 

The class is similar to online college courses, with science teacher Brent Martens as the adviser to the students when they go through lessons and videos on their computers. 

The new program started when Amazon contacted counselor Louise Ronnau. She then forwarded all the information to Martens, who she thought would be interested in taking over the class. 

“It exposes kids to coding, which isn’t something we would offer at the high school level without a program like this,” Mrs. Ronnau said. “Some people would get frustrated and just walk away, but the kids that stick with it can see what kind of job they could have with this class.”

The course and curriculum is all paid for and provided by Amazon. In addition, Amazon also pays for training for the adviser, in hopes of recruiting them and having them work for Amazon. 

The course itself is very individualized and challenging.

“We all separately watch videos on our computers of the Amazon instructor and then work on the coding that they just taught us,” senior Adyson Koster said. “It’s more responsibility and not like any other class I’ve ever taken before. It’s pretty challenging, but that’s what I like about it.” 

Photo by Sarah Salsbery
During class, senior Adyson Koster relaxes while practicing new coding methods. With less people and class structure, there’s more time for doing things at your own pace.