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Code.org introduces Frozen and Star Wars-themed courses

TechCrunch TechCrunch 28/06/2016 Sarah Buhr

Code.org is making some of Disney’s most beloved characters from Frozen and Star Wars a regular part of its core curriculum to its millions of K-5 students.

Code.org first introduced Frozen’s Anna and Elsa as part of its Hour of Code campaign in 2014 and Star Wars characters Rey, BB-8, Princess Leia, R2-D2 in a 2015 version, crediting these tutorials with helping the campaign to introduce many kids from across the globe to computer programming.

Code.org will now integrate Frozen’s Anna and Elsa, and Star Wars’ Rey, BB-8, Princess Leia, and R2-D2, into its full 80-hour computer science curriculum to teach kids the fundamentals of coding.

Both the Star Wars and Frozen tutorials have been used more than 30 million times already, according to Code.org. The startup’s main Code Studio platform now claims more than 11 million students and 330,000 teachers worldwide.

“We’ve been trying to make learning fun for kids,” says Code.org’s Hadi Partovi. “Fundamentally the reason why we’re working with Disney is because children love the Disney brand, the Disney characters and by integrating those characters into our lessons it makes learning to code much more engaging for the students.”

Computer science is an area with vast potential now and in the future for students throughout the world and Code.org’s mission is to teach to as many kids as it can, regardless of gender, background or ethnicity. The startup offers free online courses to anyone and free workshops to U.S. elementary school teachers to help them get started.

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