Bibliotech recently opened a new branch on the east side with a beautiful new Maker Space. Youth Code Jam is excited to be in that space weekly doing hands-on, fun coding activities with the kids. This new project, titled Lit*Bits™, focuses on taking literary themes and integrating them into coding projects.

April, for example, The Gruffalo took us on a journey Into The Wild with Scratch and Spheros. May is Make and Tinker Month with Doug Unplugged, where we’ll be exploring Finch Robots and micro:bits.

Lit*Bits Youth Code Jam coding literacy project

Libraries provide the ultimate makerspace where students can work collaboratively and get creative, solve problems, make, tinker and learn. Did you know that Ben Franklin, founder of one of the very first libraries, used the space for some of his earliest experiments with electricity? You might say Bibliotech, then, is a modern take on a centuries old precedent.

We’ve come up with some cool activities that Benjamin Franklin would have loved. But we’ve added a twist – reading. Why shouldn’t coding literacy be tied to reading literacy? They are intricately linked. Read the book, then come and explore the themes with us and our technology. Or, explore with us and then go read the books. The order doesn’t really matter. What matters is engaging with literature and technology and having tons of fun while doing it.

We are out at Bibliotech East, 1203 N. Walters, from 4:30 to 5:30 Monday through Wednesday each week during the school year and from 2 to 3 pm Monday through Wednesday during the summer months. This is a drop-in, and, just like just about everything else in the library, it’s a free program. Come join us!