CoderDojoDC is part of the global CoderDojo movement of free coding clubs for young people.

Maryland STEM Festival: Game Development with Rick Kelly, creator of Heroes Guard, Sunday 11/06


To RSVP for this meeting, go to our Meetup page.

As part of the 2nd Maryland STEM Festival, join CoderDojoDC for a presentation by Rick Kelly, professional game designer and creator of Heroes Guard!

Rick Kelly left a job at ZeniMax working on Elder Scrolls Online to start his own game company, UnderByte Studios. He will be speaking to the club about his background in computer science, what it’s like to start your own game company, and the creation of his game, Heroes Guard. According to GeekDad, the game is “part interactive fiction, part digital card game, you play as a member of the Heroes Guard, a group of mages who use their special skills to protect the land. You fight orcs, play with magical rings, and explore the countryside (before your candle burns down!) as story melds with card game. It’s available on both iTunes and Google Play.”

"What it's like to be a mobile game developer!", Sunday 10/09

Jonathan Schneider and Rachit Agarwal, local creators of iOS game FunPop, will be visiting to talk about what it’s like to be a mobile game developer and will be demoing FunPop! See the Meetup page for more information and to RSVP.

After the presentation, join us for some coding with friends using Scratch, Minecraft, HTML, Arduinos and more. Everyone will have a chance to demo their projects at the end of the meeting time permitting.

Silver Spring Maker Faire, Sunday 09/25

Silver Spring Maker Faire Logo

Join us at Veteran’s Plaza in Silver Spring for the 2016 Maker Faire! As we did in 2014, CoderDojoDC will have a booth at this year’s faire, where we will talk about our club and teach visitors how to write their name in binary unicode. To sign up for a timeslot to staff the booth, please go to:

To learn more about the faire, see

Robots, hover crafts, interactive art, flying machines, and so much to do and see – KID Museum is hosting the Silver Spring Maker Faire on Sunday, September 25th at Veteran’s Plaza and the Silver Spring Civic Building in Silver Spring, from 12:00-5:00 p.m. A Maker Faire features free family activities and innovative projects created by inventors, hackers, crafters, artists, and do-it-yourselfers of all kinds. The festival demonstrates creative and unusual projects and pursuits to encourage attendees to explore their own curiosity and to make something new and different.

The event is free and open to all. The Faire will feature two performance stages as well as interactive activities for children and adults of all ages.

Supercomputers and Tiny Titan

Join us on Sunday, July 3, 2016 at the Thingstitute as we learn about programming the fastest computers in the world from experts at the Department of Energy! This event is appropriate for all ages from elementary to high school. Please RSVP so that we know how many people to expect.

Supercomputers are used to solve our biggest science and engineering problems. Titan (Oak Ridge National Laboratory, TN) is America’s fastest supercomputer and can solve one-thousand trillion math problems in a single second. Tiny Titan is not a supercomputer but a toy supercomputer that acts like a real supercomputer. Tiny Titan shows us how supercomputers like Titan work. Come play on Tiny Titan and learn how many small computers can work together to solve the world’s biggest science and engineering problems!

The claw! Thanks for a great meeting!

Wow! Thanks to everyone who came out for the LittleBits Space Kit and Maryland STEM festival meeting on Nov. 8! There was a great turn out with great energy in the room.

A special thanks to Ginger Butcher for putting together such a great activity demonstrating how to build a grappler claw using LittleBits, and to all the mentors and parents who got involved in helping the kids through the lesson.

Our next activity is the virtual planning meeting for mentors which will take place this Thursday (11/12) at 9pm via Google Hangout. Please see our Meetup site for details on how to join the mentor meeting.

We hope that many of those who came out will not only return for our next regular meeting in two weeks (Nov. 22), but will also check out the Maryland STEM Festival website to find additional Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math-related activities to try over the coming week.

LittleBits Space Kit

Maryland STEM Festival Logo

At our meeting on Sunday, November 8, 2015 (3-5 pm), Ginger Butcher from NASA Goddard Space Flight Center will be joining us to share her experiences working at NASA and the importance of programming and engineering in her career. She is also one of the inventors of the littleBits Space Kit and will lead a littleBits space activity for the group. She’s bringing a lot of equipment, so you don’t need to have your own littleBits kit to take part.

Please RSVP so that we stay within the capacity of the room. If it looks like we’ll fill up the room, please understand that people who have RSVP’d will be given priority. For full details about location and logistics, and to RSVP, please go to the event page on

The littleBits activity does NOT require a laptop. However, depending on your child, they may want to continue working on their Scratch, Twine, Python or other projects for the latter part of the meeting. We’re highly encouraging this, and we still plan to have our regular demo time at the end of the meeting. Please encourage your kids to bring programming projects that they’ve made so that they can share them with others. We’ll certainly have a lot of littleBits demos this meeting, but other projects are definitely welcome. This is one of the favorite parts of CoderDojo meetings, so you won’t want to miss out!

IMPORTANT: Children 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult. And hey, you may even learn how to program too!

This meeting is part of the Maryland STEM Festival, a statewide effort to provide enriching STEM programming and activities for youth throughout Maryland. Visit the Maryland STEM Festival website to find more STEM-related activities in your area. The festival runs November 6-15, 2015.

ABOUT OUR GROUP: Help kids learn coding skills with a free weekend code club. We’re bringing the CoderDojo program of free coding clubs for kids 7-17 to the Washington, DC area. Join up if you’re a parent who wants to get their kids involved, a coder who would like to help kids learn, or like a number of our members… you’re a parent who codes and wants to do both.

Python Table

Once you’ve gotten to know core programming concepts in Scratch, a good next step is to try some Python. Python is a great language for new programmers because it is versatile and powerful, yet relatively easy to learn.

There are many great resources for learning Python online. Here are a few to check out:

  4. Python for Kids, by Jason R. Biggs ( some free content available on the No Starch website – you can also check out a copy from your local library.

Another good way to learn programming is by modifying existing programs. In our Python interest table, we are working on a “flashcard” program that quizzes the user on the state capitals. You can modify download and modify this program from our club Github repository.

Cool CoderDojoDC Animation

Thanks to Bryce Peterson (aka Pecacheu) for making this really cool animation for our club!



Remember Zork from the 80s? Choose-your-own-adventure books? Interested in writing story-like games that your friends can play?

Learn how to combine your story ideas with programming with our introduction to programming interactive fiction. Melissa Ford will show everyone how to get started with Twine, a very simple program that grows with the programmer’s abilities.

The introduction will be about fifteen minutes long. Chris Klimas, the inventor of Twine will be joining us as well and helping out as a mentor! After the intro we’ll break as normal into groups for further work/play with interactive fiction, Scratch, HTML and Minecraft hacking.

Update: Chris posted to his blog about our meeting.


Happy 2015!

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Happy New Year from CoderDojoDC! We are looking forward to many fantastic new projects and adventures in coding this year. In addition to our bi-weekly meetups with our regular Minecraft, Inteactive Fiction, and Scratch interest groups, we have the Pawelbot robot project, another visit from the Nao robot, an upcoming App Inventor introduction, continued collaboration with the Codestarter charity that supplies laptops to young coders, and many more great things on the horizon.

We look forward to seeing you at our 2015 meetings!