English | Dzongkha Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Hackathon in Samtse Higher Secondary School


Dec 12, 2020

Coding was introduced into education curriculum for the first time this year. Since students do not have to sit for coding examinations, the Samtse Higher Secondary School conducted the first-ever school level coding competition. Dubbed hackathon, the competition is hoping to keep students encouraged to learn to code. 

Forty students divided into ten groups entered the hackathon today. The coders, comprising of class IX to XII students, were selected from 127 interested students. Most of them are learning to code for the first time.

Tshering, an ICT teacher of Samtse Higher Secondary School said, “the hackathon is a coding competition among student using the computer language called Python. We have started teaching Python this year, and we have been doing this for the past three to four months. So, we wanted to see how much they have learnt through this coding competition.”

Teachers say students have exceeded their expectations and the students have shown remarkable progress despite being introduced to coding late into 2020. “Some students have been using gadgets for very long since their parents can afford. These students are very interested. We need to teach them once, and they can come up with so many other ideas. But there are certain portions of students who do not have access to these kinds of gadgets and who don’t have computers at home. They are facing a little difficult time,” said the ICT teacher.

Participating students and onlookers told BBS that they should have been introduced to coding during their primary classes. Students shared coding is everyone’s subject. A student of Samtse Higher Secondary School said, “the interesting thing about coding is that we get to talk with computers, which is a unique thing. So, I think it will help us to develop faster. We should have been taught coding from class I itself. So that by this time we get to know more about computers and technology.”

Another student, Kinley Bidha said, “coding should not be restricted based on a subject on any other thing. Coding should be open and be applied to everyone. It doesn’t require any particular knowledge of math and all. We think it’s related to math when we hear the word coding and we can’t do it. But I think everyone can do it.”

The school plans to make such hackathons a frequent event. Different forms of coding education have been introduced across all schools in the country this year.

Sherub Dorji

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