Backyard Hackers is a seasonal program that offers a variety of computer-based classes sure to stimulate your child’s mind!  From beginner level classes to more advanced game-making and coding classes, there is something for everyone!

Run by local teachers, Backyard Hackers teaches computer science through the creation of fun games and projects. The classes introduce Java programming, Minecraft, role-playing video games, and the Unity game engine.  Class content is age appropriate, serving kids as young as 6, up through high school age.  These opportunities increase a child’s comfort with computer science, helping them feel confident enough to continue to explore CS in high school and beyond.  With a focus on creating games, kids remain more engaged, by focusing on the fun things they can do through coding.

“These classes are the best thing I do all summer.” – Patrick, Age 12

“The excitement and energy is palpable during the classes.  Kids bounce in, excited to find out what’s next.  I know that we’ll be able to continue to give them something to look forward to in future summers.” – John Hendrick, Founder / Instructor

Check out the Class Descriptions and Schedule below for more details.

*non-resident online registration opens on March 16, 2019

Modding for Little Crafters

This is a simpler version of our most popular class, for the youngest hackers. Ever wanted to paint your own zombie? Feel your way around advanced graphic design programs by designing your own tools, creature and blocks, and even animate in Minecraft! Students learn how to draw, select, erase, smudge, and shade. They’ll create their own simple mod of Minecraft that can be played on a PC or Mac.

Scratch 1

A beginner-level class using the Scratch programming language. Students will drag and drop blocks into position to build their code. During the class, we’ll create a four games that students will be able to share with friends and family using the Scratch community! This class is ideal for anyone who’s interested in seeing what coding is all about. Students as young as 8 and as old as 13 have thoroughly enjoyed this 5 hour class.

Play Minecraft

We’ll be your helpful older sibling, with less bickering. Minecraft is a dense, complicated game. Let us make it less mysterious for your child. Starting with simple keyboard skills, we’ll show new Minecraft players how to move and interact with the world, craft necessary items, fight the different mobs and explore the Nether and End. Maybe we’ll even take a crack at defeating the Ender Dragon!

Mod Minecraft 1

Our most popular class! Don’t just play Minecraft! Become a modder! Use the Java programming language to make your own materials, armor, tools, biome and mobs! No experience is necessary to share your unique Minecraft world with your friends! There’s a reason why almost every Hacker has taken this class.

RPG Maker 1

Take a Hero’s Journey. This might be the most fun class available. Create your very own role-playing game in the style of Final Fantasy or Pokemon. Build your own world, have your own adventure, and tell your own story! In this game-design and story-telling class you’ll create your very own game that you can share with friends and family. They’ll be able to play your game on their own computers!

Command Blocks: An Adventure

Learn how to use special, double-secret command blocks in Minecraft to create a simple adventure and tell a story. Command blocks allow users to take control of their world, and we’ll show the kids the programming skills necessary to take control. In this class, the kids will tell a heroic story of a player who overcomes obstacles on the way to defeating a terrible monster who’s been terrorizing a village — all in Minecraft! Best of all, they’ll be able to continue developing their story at home on their own Minecraft account. Let life be an adventure this summer!

Minecraft Server Design

Playing online is a blast. Have you ever wondered how most of the special features are carried out? Why do online servers have more commands? How does teleporting work? Why was that zombie able to catch up to me, and why did it drop a diamond sword? This is class to take if you want to unlock those secrets. In Server Design: Plugins the kids will use one of the most current versions of Minecraft to design the server of their dreams. (We will not be setting up servers for the students at home.) This is the class you’ve been waiting for.

Scratch 2

The next step in unlocking your coding potential. The students will learn how to use variables as they create a game full of advanced mechanics. Students should be comfortable with the Scratch interface, making sprites move and using different costumes before taking this class. After completing this class, kids will be ready to make games for school projects or impress their friends.

CLASS NAME

AGES

DATES

TIMES

PRICE

CLASS #

Modding for Little Crafters

6-8

June 10 – 14

2:00-3:00 p.m.

$50

311629-A4

Scratch 1

6-8

June 10 – 14

1:00-2:00 p.m.

$50

311629-A3

Play Minecraft

6-8

June 10 – 14

3:00-4:00 p.m.

$50

311629-B1

Mod Minecraft 1

9+

June 10 – 14

8:00-10:00 a.m.

$90

311629-A1

Mod Minecraft 1

9+

June 17 – 21

12:30-2:30 p.m.

$90

311629-C1

RPG Maker 1

9+

June 10 – 14

10:00-11:30 a.m.

$80

311629-A2

Command Blocks: An Adventure

9+

June 17 – 21

2:30-4:30 p.m.

$90

311629-C2

Minecraft Server Design

9+

June 24 – 28

12:30-2:30 p.m.

$90

311629-E1

Scratch 2

9+

June 24 – 28

2:30-4:00 p.m.

$80

311629-E2