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Mentor at CoderDojo Toronto (Bitmaker)
CoderDojo is a volunteer-run mentorship program for kids and young people to improve their computing skills, meet peers with similar interests, and work with professionals who can answer questions and help inspire ideas. Students work at their own pace. At CoderDojo Toronto, we aim to break down barriers to access to computer literacy by working with community organizations, challenging social and economic stereotypes, and empowering youth to shape their world through code. FOR NEW MENTORS: Mentoring is a powerful way to give back to your community while strengthening your own skills. Mentors provide help to one or more learners within the dojo space, answering questions or providing guidance. Attendees come with a wide range of skill-levels, excited to work on any project they choose, so be ready for a dynamic and exciting environment. How do I prepare for my first session? Review our Github (https://github.com/CoderDojoTo/lessons/). We start all new learners with Scratch, and based on their progress are encouraged to choose projects they are interested. Each folder in our Github is approximately represented in real life with color-coded duo tangs: Scratch, Web, Programming, and Hardware. Mentors can easily spot and support students working on projects and material that match your skill set. How long does each volunteer shift last for? Events are no longer than 2.5 hours, with breaks. You can expect to be present for roughly 3.25 hours including pitching in for event set-up and/or tear-down, plus an opportunity to provide feedback. What skills are required to volunteer? Creativity, patience, kindness, and child appropriate behaviour are all required. Mentors are expected to be familiar with our Scratch resources (https://github.com/CoderDojoTo/lessons/tree/master/1_scratch), including the MIT developed ‘Creative Computing’ Scratch Workbook, building Scratch programming knowledge and creativity with computers. http://toronto.coderdojo.ca/learn-code/ . Join us on Slack! Request an invite, or get in touch via email: [masked] See you at the Dojo! *CoderDojoTo is held at Bitmaker, a code academy for adults. It is located up a small flight of stairs. Wheelchair access is unfortunately not available at this time.

Bitmaker Labs

220 King West, Suite 200. · Toronto, ON

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What we're about

CoderDojo is a free computer club for kids, which started in Ireland in 2011 and grew quickly into a global community of over 875 clubs operating in 65 countries. Starting 2013, CoderDojoTo remains the only consistently active CoderDojo group in Canada. We work within communities to provide free computer workshops in fun learning environments - breaking down barriers, challenging social and economic stereotypes, and empowering youth to shape their world through code.

Why is this important?

Computing is an increasingly important form of literacy. Code is part of a booming industry, with a growing skills gap. There are more tech jobs in Canada than there are qualified candidates to fill them. Code will be used to help solve global problems. Unforeseen employment opportunities will continue to be created with code. Code is good for your brain - whether it’s solving a problem for a personal indie game or building the next big industry.

• 90% of Canadian firms surveyed said they have some form of IT skills gap. (CompTIA survey)

• 55% of Canadian Chief Information Officers (CIOs) say it’s difficult to find skilled tech professionals today. (Robert Half Technology)

• 2%-3% The unemployment rate in the Information and Communications Technology and Digital Media industries, statistically viewed as full employment. (Information Technology Association of Canada (ITAC) and Entertainment Software Association of Canada (ESAC) White Paper)

• 2.7 million Canadians are self-employed entrepreneurs or 8% of the total population. (Statistics Canada)

How can we fix this gap?

It is our vision that every young Canadian has the opportunity to learn to code. We hear from teachers, students, and community organizations who want to start a code program but lack resources and training. To combat this, we have packaged our full-colour paper lesson plans into curriculum kits and are working with schools and libraries across the GTA to support their goals of starting their own computer literacy programs.

How can you help?

By volunteering to mentor young people at our regular monthly meet-up, or at one of our special community events. Moreso, we looking for dedicated members who can help build CoderDojo in GTA and Canada by joining our team. Current support roles are available in curating and creating resources, and helping secure funding sources.

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