Frequently Asked Questions

Where do you get your curriculum?

We use our own project-based curriculum. Our curriculum has been developed by the ThoughtSTEM co-founders, PhDs in the field of computer science education, and other ThoughtSTEM employees.



Does my child need to bring their own computer?

Not at all! We bring our own computers so that you don't have to.



What are the age ranges?

In general, we break our programs into the following age ranges: K-2nd, 3rd-5th grade, 6th-8th grade, and 9th-12th grade. These may vary slightly depending on the school.



What if my child has no programming experience?

That's great! Our after-school programs are perfect for students without previous coding experience. Each student will be able to progress through curriculum at their own pace; our teachers are there to help!



What if my child has significant programming experience already?

That's great too! Our after-school programs give students a creative outlet for their skills. More experienced students will be able to flex their creative muscles on more complex projects. If our teachers find your student to be ahead of their classmates, your student will graduate to working on harder challenges and projects.



What programming language will my child be using?

Our after-school programs will be introducing a variety of programming languages, including Scratch, our own Vox-L, Stencyl and more!



Do I need to purchase anything for my child?

All software is provided for your child. You do not need to purchase anything. Most programs are available to be used at home for free, as well. Your child's instructor will send regular messages about the course and the programs being used.



How do I enroll my student?

Find your student’s school on our All Programs page here. There will be a link on your school’s after-school program page to register & pay for the program!

Courses at UCSD Extension

How does my child receive pre-college credit from UCSD Extension?

Once your student completes the course you can fill out this form and send it in to UCSD Extension in order to request a copy of your student's transcript. Note that students may only receive pre-college credit for completion of the the Saturday or weekday classes at UCSD Extension (not for our after school programs).



Can my student enroll in this class more than once?

We encourage students to enroll in any or all of our classes. We teach different topics on different days, and we also offer more challenging projects to returning students in the same topic.



Where do you get your curriculum?

ThoughtSTEM uses its own project-based curriculum. Our curriculum has been developed by our co-founders, PhDs in the field of computer science education, and other ThoughtSTEM employees.



Does my child need to bring their own computer?

Computers are provided at all of our courses, so students need not bring their own.



Do students need to purchase any software for this class?

All software is provided for your child. You do not need to purchase anything. Most programs are available to be used at home for free, as well. Your child's instructor will send regular messages about the course and the programs being used.

Weekend Workshops

Does my child need to bring their own computer?

Your child is welcome to bring her or his own computer to the workshop. We have a number of computers available, however, if your child does not have a computer to bring.



When and where are ThoughtSTEM workshops held?

Two ThoughtSTEM workshops are held each Sunday at UCSD, one from 10 am - 12 Noon and the other from 1 - 3 pm. (Click for Directions)



Who helps my kids at the workshops?

ThoughtSTEM has hired several undergraduate mentors from local colleges to help mentor your kids. All of the mentors are highly qualified in both teaching and programming.



How do I sign up?

You can enroll from this page.



When do I pay?

You can pay online. When you add the workshop item to your shopping cart in your online store, you'll be asked to fill out some enrollment information about your child. You should receive a confirmation e-mail after you've completed the transaction online.



So how much does it cost?

The cost for one 2-hr workshop is $50, but there are currently several discounts available, described here.



If I purchase 10 workshops in advance, does my student have to attend the next 10 consecutive workshops?

No! We will keep a "punch card" for your student to keep track of their 10 workshops. This way your student can miss a workshop here and there without any problem.



Can I as a parent stay at the workshop or do I have to leave my student there alone?

Parents are always allowed to stick around during the workshops. We would encourage you to let your child do the projects on their own, but you are welcome to learn with them!



Is it a problem if my student can only come every other week?

It's not a problem at all! We've designed these workshops so that students can jump in at any skill level at any time. We have challenges available for all skill levels and our mentors will help your student decide which challenges would be best to pursue.

Camps

Where do you get your curriculum?

ThoughtSTEM uses its own project-based curriculum. Our curriculum has been developed by our co-founders, PhDs in the field of computer science education, and other ThoughtSTEM employees.



Does my child need to bring their own computer?

Computers are provided at all of our camps! There’s no need for your child to bring their own computer.



What are the age ranges?

Each location will have different programs specific to certain age groups, but typically we have camps available to students in the K-12th grade.