What are high school programming contests?
High School programming contests are team events where students from different schools attempt to solve as many problems as possible in a 2-4 hour time frame. Most teams consist of 3 members and are allowed to use 1 computer.
Why should I take teams to programming contests?
Well, it is a great way to get more students interested in computer science. It is great team building and it is a ton of fun. If you have teams that win, that is even better. Winning a contest or two can really pump up your stats on that college application.
Which contests are out there that my students can attend?
HP CodeWars is fun and growing every year with new sites popping up all over.
Lockheed Martin Code Quest is another contest with sites all across the planet.
Check out my contest page with links to many contests in Texas and beyond.
Can I get materials to help my teams prepare or to host a contest at my school?
Sure. Check out my contest materials page for information on materials to prep for contests, live online programming problems, and contest hosting materials. Hosting a local contest in your area is really fun and a great experience for students. It is also a great way to promote Computer Science and get more schools involved.
If I have to give up lots of my time to get students ready to compete and to take them to contests, is it worth it?
It is very well worth it. Contests are great opportunities for students to learn more about team work and problems solving. Students learn many cool algorithms preparing for contests that often show up in technical interviews. Several of my former students that have interviewed with big software companies were asked to explain how to solve problems in technical interviews that we worked on preparing for programming contests. I have been fortunate to have coached several state championships in my 15+ year of coaching Computer Science teams. Those experiences are well worth the time spent making that happen.