Code Ninjas Fargo: Speaking the Language of “Tween”

code ninjas fargo

As moms, we want our tweens and teens to have fun while learning important life skills. Piano lessons, swimming lessons, hockey… they all have the same goal: to build our child’s skill set. But with the ever-growing realm of technology, how can we help keep our kids skilled in an area that will inevitably serve them well into adulthood?

That’s where Code Ninjas Fargo comes in. 

Lord knows I don’t know how to code. In fact, I had to Google “what is coding” to understand what it truly entails. My 12-year-old son, on the other hand, is very drawn to video games. Honestly, I can barely get him to think about anything else. And so spending some time at Code Ninjas, on a screen, was a skill-building “extra-curricular” I could convince him to do. While piano or swimming are less than enthralling for him, creating a video game is RIGHT up his alley.

I was happy to learn he would be creating a game and thinking and planning and learning in-person, versus just watching Youtube videos of someone else playing or creating a game. He was highly motivated to earn his belts at Code Ninjas and catch up to some friends he knew from school. It was just enough push for him to excel in the program, but also have fun alongside his friends while doing it. 

Helping Both New and Advanced Ninjas

Code Ninjas provided a space for an already tech-savvy “ninja” like my son and ninjas who need a bit more support to explore coding (like my 10-year-old daughter) to learn at their own pace. They could begin and advance at their own level, and gain important tech skills necessary for today’s world. My daughter participated on a program called Scratch, adding elements to the games that were already started at her level. Eager to move up levels, my son worked on a more difficult program with less “training wheels.” 

My daughter’s favorite thing about Code Ninjas was the sensei’s (their name for teachers.)  She thought they were very fun and engaging. My son’s favorite thing was the competition part of the program. Since he was out from sports for a few months with an injury, Code Ninjas gave him an opportunity to keep those competitive juices flowing through their CREATE program.  

Give Them a Step Up

This is not an ideal year for learning. Code Ninjas provided an opportunity to supplement their education in a way that I certainly could not at home. The Code Ninja CREATE program (specifically for ages 7-14) allowed my pre-teen kids to learn quickly and at a higher level than they could have learned at home or school. 

I am thankful for programs like Code Ninjas that cater to tweens and teens. It gives them the opportunity to learn and improve a tech skill that will inevitably serve them well as they grow. Learning to code also helps “speak their language” in a way other extracurricular programs don’t always do. 

So if you’re a parent like me who doesn’t understand Roblox or Minecraft or drones but has a kid who does, Code Ninjas is just the place for them. 

Current Coding Classes Offered

In-person class times for CREATE (ages 7-14) are Monday-Thursday between 3:15 – 6:30 p.m. and Saturdays between 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Code Ninjas Fargo also offers a number of programs for kids ages 5-9 that are new to coding, as well as camps.

Code Ninjas is excited to soon be expanding their at-home learning programs for families that want to build their coding skills with the support of a Sensei from the comfort of their own home. Ninjas will progress through projects each week to flex their creative muscles and sharpen their ninja coding skills at home.

For any other info, you can visit the website and find contact information here.

Code Ninjas: Coding for Kids!

This post was sponsored by Code Ninjas Fargo. For more information on their programs, see the links above. 
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Erika has worked in the educational setting as a physical therapist for 17 years, after attending UND and NDSU. After recognizing difficult behaviors in her third child, she became an advanced trainer of the Nurtured Heart Approach®. Professionally, Erika is also a mentor, course-captain, and clinical instructor, and has served students in the Autism magnet program for 10 years. She recently served on the Pediatric Advisory Board for Curriculum Development at UND, and on a task force with the Department of Instruction to create the first school-based PT/OT guidelines in the state. She also is a mentor with BioGirls, leads a group of teenage boys at confirmation, leads a Girl Scout troop, and has coached baseball. For the past two Mother’s Days, Erika has hosted a Neighborhood Chalk Party, an event designed to further build relationships in neighborhoods on the principle of “it takes a village to raise a child.” She was born and raised in Hankinson, ND, and has lived in the Fargo area for over 25 years with her husband (who you may know as the radio DJ on Bob 95 FM: "Chris, John and Cori in the Morning"). Together they have four children: girl-boy-boy-girl, ages 10-16. Erika is passionate about empowering kids, preventative health, hiking, and national parks.


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