Tech Beat: ABCs of mobile app development taught at Queens high school
High school students in Queens are part of a pilot program that could make them next up to create the next great mobile app. YNN's Adam Balkin filed the following report.
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Who will create the next "Angry Birds" or "Siri," the next must-have mobile app? It might be one of the students at Grover Cleveland High School in Queens, which has been chosen to be one of five schools in the United States to be part of a pilot program run by Lenovo and the National Academy Foundation, where app development will be added to the curriculum.
"This really enables them to build mobile applications, become a developer and put together a business plan on how that application should be marketed," says Pat McKay of Lenovo.
The other schools are in North Carolina, Texas, California and Connecticut. They are all getting 30 Lenovo Android tablets and then at the end of the pilot, a competition among them all will determine who created the best app.
The prizes have yet to be determined but Lenovo says it will likely promote the winner on the Android marketplace.
Organizers of the program say teaching these students how to make apps, something they use every day, reinforces on so many levels the importance of studying the so-called STEM subjects — science, technology, engineering and math.
"This is a way for them to apply what they're learning in a way that's really relevant to them and then world it's what we're all using," says Colleen Devery of the National Academy Foundation. "On the high end, maybe some students will become mobile app developers. At the very least, maybe some will understand why they're learning what they're learning in school. They'll have ways to strengthen their own ideas about how what they learn in school relates to jobs."
As for the students themselves, they just seem excited to dig in and see what they come up with.
"I always wondered how to make it, now that I'm getting hands-on experience. It's crazy," says one student. "It's not as easy as I thought but more fun than I thought."
"It seems like it's going to be a lot of work but for what we've done so far it's been really fun
To learn more about programs in your neighborhood that encourage students to take a great interested in STEM subjects, check out the initiative by YNN's parent company, Time Warner Cable, at ConnectAMillionMinds.com.