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A Typical Day at NextGen

NextGen is the premiere coding summer camp for high school students in New York City, New Jersey, and Los Angeles. Our summer programs cover a wide array of topics and coding languages and are tailored to high school students. Within our certificate programs and 2-week courses we teach using the same mantra alliteration, applied activities. Our courses are taught in order for students to learn how to build and develop on their own. We teach language agnostic principles, which equip students with computational thinking that spans across all languages. Additionally, our classes come with workbooks and files that students can work directly off of using our step by step activities that are paired with micro lectures. Our self-titled “micro-lectures” are lectures that are under 15 minutes that cover all information necessary to get up and running and not a drop more. So, what does an average day at NextGen consist of?

Morning Session

10–10:30: Review & Daily Goals: The first thirty minutes of our class is divided up into two sections: review of the previous days material and the current days goals. The review section can consist of a small lecture reviewing the material or a brief comprehensive exercise. Students who had trouble at the end of the previous class can use this time to ask the teacher any question he or she has. The remaining part of this time is used to discuss what we are going to learn today and how it is applicable in the real world. This section not only intends to organize the students but also to motivate them!

10:30–11:45: Micro-Lecture 1: This will be the students first lecture of the day and an introduction to the first topic they will be learning. These lectures can range from 4-15 minutes but never going over 15 minutes. The lecture style is interactive with small problems along the way to make sure the students are following along with the instructor. Our lecture can consist of PowerPoint presentations, short videos, or even an old-school whiteboard session!

11:45–12:15: Guided Practice: This is the first completely hands-on section of the day. The students will work on writing a piece of code that applies the concepts and more presented in the previous micro-lecture. For example, in the web class students will be introduced to image inputting, so a guided practice for that will be to input an image and video with certain borders and features. These practices will always come with a sheet that has instructions that are paired with hints to help the students. Additionally, the teacher and teacher assistant will be walking around the room to check up on each and every student.

12:15–12:45: Review of Practice & Advanced Problem Module: After students are done working on their guided practice, the instructor will quickly go over the right answer by coding on the screen. After that, the instructor will go over an advanced problem within this topic step by step with the class.

12:45–1:30: Lunch & Tech Talks: After an extremely productive morning of coding and learning, students will be able to break for lunch. However, students will have the option of eating lunch with the instructor and talk about the latest in technology from artificial intelligence to cryptocurrency. These talks are optional, but students are encouraged to stay and participate and most do!

Afternoon Session

1:30–1:45: Guided Project Micro-lecture: This is when the instructor lays the foundation for the current project that the students will be working on in the afternoon. This lecture’s goal is to show the students what the end goal for today of their current project. This allows students to keep on track and understand why these lessons and coding features are necessary.

1:45–3:15: Project work: This section is when students really get to dive into their projects and see what they learned in action! During this time, both of the instructors will walk around the room providing one on one guidance to the students.

3:15–4:00: Micro Lecture/Continue Coding: This section of the day tends to be different with each course and class. The students might be stuck on a problem so the teacher will introduce a lecture on that topic or the students might be coding flawlessly and we might extend time for their project. Other times, there might be a guest speaker or an ancillary topic that is important to know!