Aug 7, 2017
Technocamp: Microsoft’s Armenian Tech Camp Teaching Children Web Development
Armenia is home to many talented engineers and great innovators, whose knowledge and skill lies in their strong educational background and technical creativity. Many are passing on their expertise to the next generations at many of the Summer Tech Camps in Armenia.
Technocamp, organized by the Microsoft Innovation Center Armenia (MIC)’s is another great summer Tech Camp. Organized annually for children aged 10 - 14, the camp is already welcoming its second round of students this year.
Engaging lessons in the world of development
Technocamp is ideal for tech-savvy kids, who want to master the technologies of tomorrow and be one step ahead of everyone else.
The camp program is designed to provide high-tech kids with valuable theoretical knowledge in the areas of development, as well as presentations skills and English (with an emphasis on IT vocabulary).
Another goal of Technocamp is working toward making IT development a mandatory part of the curriculum in Armenian schools.
“We want [to] include development and engineering in Armenian school curriculum,” says Sona Martirosyan, Education Projects Coordinator at Microsoft Innovation Center Armenia (MIC Armenia). “We believe IT development will also improve the logical skills of the students and will become a way of thinking,” she added.
At Technocamp, a dynamic tech environment keeps campers active and engaged throughout the entire program. Kids run around the campsite, looking for new ideas and inspiration from the success stories of their fellow-campers.
During the course, students also visit Armenian IT companies to see what it looks like to be a developer. They have a chance to meet with professionals, ask questions and make connections in companies that may, one day, become their mentors.
By the end of the camp, participants present the websites they have developed over the course of the camp and share the stories and lessons behind each product.
Aspiring future developers
At Technocamp, training sessions are conducted under the guidance of professionals, experienced teachers in small groups - up to 15 students per teacher. Whether a child is a beginner or an advanced-level learner, teachers can always find fun and interesting ways to help them develop their skills.
Students get to meet like-minded peers from all over the world, who also aspire to become professionals.
“I am planning to become a developer and here we learn exactly what I need to advance in programming. I liked the courses. I am sure that this was a right choice,” says Hovhannes Simonyan, a Technocamp 2017 participant, to Why Armenia.
Hovhaness is a ninth grader and an ambitious beginner on his way into the world of web development. In his words, he likes the sphere and wants to create a new social network, which will connect people from around the world by forming small online communities.
On the make developers
Once the campers graduate from the camp, their connection with Microsoft Innovations Center takes a new turn. After the 2016 program, a small group of participants attended the camp for one additional class. Four other participants, with the help of MIC mentors, are planning to start their own start up.
Around 70% of last year’s participants rejoined the center in order to continue their studies in this field.
Last year, a participant with a speech and hearing impairment, who was inspired by his journey of learning to speak, created a website that helps others with a similar condition. The website included personal stories and achievements from his own life.
Another website created by Technocamp graduates, helps citizens find a quicker and easier way to get from one destination to another in Yerevan.
A 10-year-old camper plans to create yet another website, which will include useful and not-so-useful games. The useful games will strengthen a player’s knowledge in mathematics and science, whereas the not-useful ones will simply be a time waste be an amusing waste of time.