Behind the game: Students learn how to design their own apps, games - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Valley And State

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Behind the game: Students learn how to design their own apps, games

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Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 7:06 am

Chelsea Kozak has always been interested in technology. Through the use of various devices and with age, that curiosity turned into a desire for more knowledge.

At the end of a week-long technology camp, Kozak, 14, can say she completed her first every application, a Magic 8 Ball program.

Through iD Tech Camps, students from 8 to 16 years old can learn how to make their own iPhone and iPad “apps,” work on robotics, or creating a computer game.

“I’ve always wanted to know more about technology, I just didn’t know how to do it,” Kozak, a student at Horizon Community Learning Center, said. “They teach you the basics and that’s hard to get past. But the instructors are right there and helping you all along the way.”

The director of the camp, which takes place locally on the Arizona State University campus, said there are practical and educational benefits which translate into increasing knowledge about STEM (science, technology, engineering and math).

“They are working on hands-on and kinetic projects that all involve technology,” said Garth Backman, director of the camp. “The kids are immersed in all aspects of STEM through this program. And, on their side, almost every class will leave with something, a game, a level they designed, or an app, that they can take home.”

Camps run for a week and students learn Java and C++ programming. They work with Flash, digital media, Adobe Photoshop, Final Cut Pro and more throughout their camp experience.

“My favorite part about the camp is having a creative idea and making it work on the computer,” said Sam Cool, a Kyrene de la Colina fifth-grader.

There are three more, week-long camp session available — July 2-7, July 9-13 and July 16-20. Course descriptions and times can be found at

Prices for day camps start at $749 and $1,248 for overnight camps.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-4903 or

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