Hour of Code: Teaching a bit of coding magic in Sarajevo

Kristijan Barlek

They say programming is like magic. To kids and young people, it opens up new realms, worlds to explore, teaches them creativity and problem solving. It also teaches that the human mind is our greatest asset and that there’s nothing that we can’t accomplish if we put it to good use.

Infobip jumped at the chance to open these doors as part of the ”Hour of Code“ initiative, a global programming movement teaching tens of millions of students in 180+ countries. Our job is connecting businesses with people, but connecting isn’t just about technology which we pride ourselves on, it’s also a responsibility to transfer what we know to younger generations.

At this point, learning to code is simply about understanding how the world functions.

Chris Bosh – NBA star, who also participated in code.org’s project

Indeed, we can teach them a lot about how the world works, but with the right early incentive, there is so much more they will be able to teach us. The plan was simple, developers Dino Bico, Admir Okovic and Edin Fazlic would provide an hour of a coding introduction to 35 students at the Hasan Kikic elementary school in Sarajevo, demystify computer science and show that anybody can create some magic with lines of code.

For starters, it was all about simulating coding with cups and programming an imaginary robot called “Zed” who organised said cups in football-type formations. Then, the students split in two groups did some reverse engineering, trying to decrypt the programming from the other team which gave them insight in code implementation and differences in programming logic. Just like that, the hour had passed far too quickly, so our team extended its stay to answer volumes of questions coming from eager ears.

This really was a fascinating experience. These students have amazing potential, they all participated with glee and raised intelligent issues. We had a blast answering each question with as much information as we could cram in there. We’re also looking forward to continuing down this path because when you see something like this, it’s impossible to go back.

Edin Fazlic – Software Engineer, Infobip

As expected, with dedicated cooperation of the school’s principal and governing bodies, the students grabbed programming with both hands and never let go. And why should they? Most kids like to create things, so coding comes to them as naturally as playing a game like basketball. For us, it’s all about giving them the opportunity to play

Jan 9th, 2015
2 min read

Kristijan Barlek