Santa Fe Public Library

Serious Computer Programming for Youth

Posted by baesmith on

June 23, 2018 @ 10:00 am – 5:45 pm

The Santa Fe Public Library is offering a free, hands-on Programming Camp, which is a 10-hour course focused on kids (6th grade or older) in elementary, middle and high school, but it is open to anyone.  They will learn to write software in Python on the GNU/Linux operating system. “The goal is to get started on a path that leads to serious programming, rather than using a canned ‘for kids’ programming environment which will never be used for real work”, states Mark Galassi, LANL Research Scientist and the program’s coordinator.

No cost

There is no cost: the course is free and taught by volunteers.

“Special thanks to the LANL foundation for a grant which has helped purchase materials, the Santa Fe Public Library for offering its space and resources, and the Friends of the Santa Fe Public Library for helping with fundraising”, states Galassi.

How to start

(Pandemic adjustment: during the pandemic we will not meet in person, and your instructor will work with you remotely ahead of time to prepare the computer.)

I have written a detailed Teacher’s Manual which you can find in my documents page which gives a detailed outline of what will be studied in each segment of the course.

To register your child (in 6th grade or older) for the camp, start by visiting this website for more details:

The next workshop will take place virtually using the Jitsi videoconferencing platform. It is a 10 hour course and students must commit to taking the full course.


Saturday, January 16 (10am-12:30pm and 1:15pm-5:30pm), continuing Sunday, January 17 (1pm-4:45pm)

Send email to to sign up. You may also phone +1-505-629-0759. “Space” is limited.

Note to Santa Fe Public School students: the school district blocks your outgoing emails without even telling you (yes, this is quite absurd). You need to write from a personal account, not from your school account.

footnote (*): Jitsi is a free/open-source videoconferencing system which runs inside your browser or with mobile apps. It has profound by-design respect for privacy, and does not require you to install toxic software on your computer.


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