Last month I had mentioned taking a couple of coding workshops with a non-profit organization called Ladies Learning Code. Revanche GS over @ A Gai Shan Life was interested in hearing about my experience dabbling in code with other ladies. My guess is that she’s not the only one. 🙂
The first workshop I took was an HTML(hypertext markup language)/CSS (cascading style sheets)workshop in which we created a multi-page website about ourselves. The first page was the homepage, the second was an about me page and the third was a page with a contact form.
I had done the HTML/CSS section in Codecademy and learned about HTML and CSS in my part-time web dev course, so the majority of the class was a review for me. The workshop enabled me to get more practice out of typing the specific syntax used in HTML and CSS. For those of you unfamiliar with these languages, HTML is the language used to build the basic structure of a web page. CSS defines the look and layout of the text and material of that page. Essentially, CSS is what makes your website look pretty.
In this day and age, almost every single business (it wouldn’t make sense for an online business to not have one, obviously) or person has their own website. So the demand for web designers won’t be going down anytime soon.
There were notes, files with HTML and CSS code and instructions on what to download given to us prior to the course. I found the notes very useful as reference material. They also provided tips, shortcuts, and links to other resources.
I felt the class went at a pretty good pace. If you’re brand new and not a fast typer, (which definitely comes in handy when taking a coding course, so you can type and follow along) you may find it a bit fast paced. However, there are a lot of volunteer mentors around to explain things, help you out and get you up to speed if you feel like you are falling behind. I appreciated the fact that even though the class was big, the student to instructor ratio was around 3:1.
(Important note: Laptops are NOT provided for the workshop-so it’s BYOL: Bring your own laptop. Doesn’t matter if it’s a Mac or PC)
The workshop ran almost a whole day 10am-4pm. It went by pretty fast. The lead instructor was very friendly, funny and animated. The mentors were very patient and helpful. What I have learned and love about the tech community is that it’s a collaborative group. Each of them wanted to be there and enjoyed helping people discover the beauty of programming. It was inspiring to hear how each of them started their career paths. Many of them didn’t take computer science in school and discovered programming on their own. Then it became their passion.
This is more of an aside but I should also mention as a bonus that a healthy, delicious lunch is included. That hour is a great time to pick the mentors’/lead instructor’s brains or chat with the other ladies. Everyone has a story to tell and each story is different. But the desire and curiosity is found in each and every one of us.
Students are encouraged to practice what they have learned and further develop their site after class. I’ll be honest, I haven’t touched mine due to so many other things going on, but it is on my never-ending to-do list.
The Ladies Learning Code Workshops represent a great, learning environment that caters towards females. I am now addicted to these workshops, because they:
- Enable you to learn the basics of different programming languages in each workshop
- Are affordable- $64.24 CDN tax inc. -don’t forget about the cost of lunch being included in this price
- Don’t take up a lot of your time
- It’s not intimidating at all
- Provide you an opportunity to network and learn more about how you can make a possible career out of it
If you live in a Canadian city or close to one where these workshops are located, I highly recommend going to one just to see what it’s all about. Bring a friend and learn how to code together! I had such a positive experience from my first workshop that I went to another one on Ruby. I am now trying to fill part of my weekends with these workshops.
I’ll be posting a review of the Ruby workshop in the near future.
Btw, if any of you live in the Windy City, there is one organization called Code and Cupcakes. How cute is that? I found a link on Popsugar that lists a whole bunch of courses offered in the U.S. by various organizations.
Have you taken any coding workshops? Would you consider taking a coding class? Which language would you learn and why?