You might also enjoy these other programs
Technology is one among a rapidly growing list of education programs. If your child is interested in technology and/or computers, you might also consider the following:
Engineering programs: in-depth instruction in engineering, an important field with a wide range of applications in the sciences and social sciences
Science programs: a broad field covering several sub-disciplines, such as biology, chemistry, physics, and astronomy
Math programs: teach a wide variety of abstract and applied subjects, such as algebra, calculus, logic, geometry, and number theory
STEM programs: focus on the approach to learning that combines science, technology, engineering, and math
LEGO programs: ideal for young children who enjoy hands-on play, and aren’t quite ready for more complex tasks
Minecraft programs: (like LEGO) are ideal for younger kids, especially those who can’t get enough of this creative building game
Types of technology programs
There are dozens of different kinds of technology programs throughout Canada. There are as many kinds of programs as there are areas of technology. This means you’ll have a huge variety of programs to choose from. These include the following:
Computer and technology programs: focus on the basics of computer science and related technologies
Coding programs: teach and develop skills and knowledge in programming languages and their applications
Robotics programs: teach and develop interest, skills, and knowledge in robotics and related technologies
Animation and 3D design programs: great for kids interested in computer animation and graphic design
Website design/development programs: teach the basics and sometimes the more advanced features of designing and/or developing websites
Video game design programs: ideal fit for “gamers” who are creative and interested in design and various types of technology
Benefits of technology programs
Technology programs are some of the most popular on our website. While some kids prefer arts or sports programs, increasing numbers are turning to technology. Like other after-school and weekend education programs, these programs have perks that go beyond being fun (though they are fun as well!). From coding to robotics to animation, they allow your child to both pursue a compelling interest and learn outside of school hours.
Among others, technology programs can have the following benefits for your child:
- Enrichment: is your child looking to pursue a powerful interest in one or more technology? If so, an after-school or weekend program can be just the ticket. This can be a great way to engage in more advanced learning and acquire sophisticated technical knowledge that may not be possible during the school day.
- Skill acquisition: technology programs are a great way for your child to learn and develop specific skills. Typically, they’re offered in an interactive environment where students can apply and test the skills they’re learning, working with both instructors and peers.
- Engaged, hands-on learning: unlike for some school subjects, your child won’t be sitting in a chair, quietly licensing to an instructor give a lecture. Technology programs, almost invariably, take place in dynamic learning environments where there’s lots of interaction, collaboration, and practical, hands-on learning.
- School preparation: computer-based technology is becoming more and more pervasive in schools. By learning the basics of, say, computer programming, your child can acquire knowledge integral to primary and secondary school curricula. Sometimes this can also give your child a leg up on the competition in post-secondary school applications.
- Job and career prospects: the skills your child will learn in a technology class can help them get a desirable—and sometimes well-paying—after-school or summer job. It can also pave the way for entry into an exciting and successful career in a dynamic field. More on this below.
Career trajectories in technology
Needless to say, computer-based technology is a rapidly burgeoning field. It’s becoming more and more a part of our everyday lives, from morning to evening, from preschool to retirement.
There are virtually countless careers in the field of technology. Taking a technology class or program can be a crucial step in preparing your child or teenager for one or more of these. While we can’t discuss them all, below is an interesting list. These are the top 10 careers in technology, according to US News:
Median salary: $103,560
Projected job growth by 2026: 24%
Computer systems analyst
Median salary: $88,270
Projected job growth by 2026: 9%
Median salary: $139,220
Projected job growth by 2026: 12%
Information security analyst
Median salary: $95,510
Projected job growth by 2026: 28%
Median salary: $87,020
Projected job growth by 2026: 11%
Median salary: $67,990
Projected job growth by 2026: 15%
Computer network architect
Median salary: $104,650
Projected job growth by 2026: 6%
Computer systems administrator
Median salary: $81,100
Projected job growth by 2026: 6%
Computer support specialist
Median salary: $52,810
Projected job growth by 2026: 11%
Median salary: $82,240
Projected job growth by 2026: -7%
What to look for in a technology program
How do you know which technology program is right for your child? This is an especially important question given the wide array of options.
While it’s impossible to give a definitive answer, there are certain pointers which we think will guide you in the right direction. First, consider your child. Ask yourself the following questions:
- What are their interests vis-à-vis technology?
- What are their strengths and weaknesses?
- Are they missing any essential tech skills?
- What type of learner are they?
- Are they looking for a broader technology background or do they have a more specific interest?
- What’s their level of knowledge and expertise in computers and technology (especially in the area(s) they’re interested in pursuing)?
Then take a close look at different technology programs. You can get an in-depth look at them by going through their profiles here on OurKids.net/programs. You should also visit them in person, and ask plenty of questions.
Here are a few important questions to get you started:
- What is your curriculum?
- What is your approach to teaching and learning?
- What kinds of tasks and activities does your program involve?
- What can my child expect to learn, and what skills is she likely to acquire?
- Who are your instructors—full-time and part-time—and what are their qualifications?
- What kinds of facilities and equipment do you have, and how do you use them?
- Do kids work mostly by themselves or in groups?
Be sure you’ve found the best camp or program
Finding the right camp or program for your child is no simple task. If you look around at the breadth of options, this can be a daunting challenge. A good place to start is the Our Kids camp and program expo, held every February in Toronto. You’ll find many camps and programs there, as well as interactive activities, learning sessions, and more. It’s the ideal way to learn about the camp and program landscape, and to find the best fit for your child.
To learn more about choosing a camp or program, including a technology program, use the following Our Kids resources: How to choose a camp or program, Technology program reviews, Canada’s camp and program guide
To learn more about careers in technology and computers, check out the following sources:
Bureau of Labor Statistics: computer and information technology careers
US News: discover the best technology careers
TheBalanceCareers.com: Information technology jobs
ITCareerFinder.com: best computer jobs for the future