School’s out (finally). Time to really sink into summer’s sun and fun. But for many parents, summer also means tackling this gnawing question, how are we going to keep these children entertained? Well, for your tech-head kid, we’re happy to discover Microsoft YouthSpark Summer Camp, which teaches kids code. And the best part is? It’s totally free.

Related: Awesome online camps that turn screen time into learning time

YouthSpark is Microsoft’s global initiative to empower kids through technology, with the hopes that learning opportunities will spark change in the world.  If that sounds good to you, and you have an 8-16 year old, check to see if the Microsoft retail store near you is offering the courses.  Kids will get hands-on experience in coding, creating apps and designing their own video games using the latest technologies.

(Hey, better designing video games than just mindlessly playing one, maybe?)

This is more like a camp, so expect to sign your kids up for a two-hour session that lasts four consecutive days. With any luck the store will be near a nice air conditioned coffee shop so you can grab a few hours of quiet for yourself while the kids are busy. But definitely run, don’t walk to the YouthSpark page to see if your local store offers the camps and sign up stat, because classes will likely fill up pretty quickly.


YouthSpark Summer Camp | free coding classes for kids


We’re always cheering on companies that offer coding classes and camps — stay tuned for Apple Camp info for this year. And we definitely support fun coding apps and cool toys like the Dot and Dash Robots or the Robot Turtles board game that encourage kids to learn how to code. Let’s just say, we hope to see more free coding classes for kids popping up soon because in the end, they will benefit all of us.

(h/t Techlicious)