October 25, 2022

Shirley Lane Elementary Launches Game Development STEM Program

Elementary School in Bakersfield, California, adds award-winning computer science curriculum to their course lineup.

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Shirley Lane Elementary School’s newest course addition is providing computer science education to its students. Part of the Fairfax School District, located in Bakersfield, this pioneering school has made coding and game development curricula available to its students with the help of Mastery Coding’s Game Development Foundations course. 

Asia Bragg, curriculum writer at Mastery Coding
"The best part of the Game Development Foundations course is that the curriculum is consistently designed for student interests and engagement. [...] Everything from the tools to the presentation of the content is made for students to get a structured and safe introduction to game design and development."
-Asia Bragg

The newly added course, provided by Mastery Coding, leverages the excitement of creating games to teach computer science, mathematics, and problem-solving. Students use custom JavaScript engines and the PixilArt editor to build games while learning computational thinking, 2D graphic design, and game development principles. Along the way, students build an impressive portfolio of projects and also review relevant STEM concepts. Mastery Coding is looking forward to the impact this partnership will have on the future success of Fairfax School District’s students. By partnering with Mastery Coding, Shirley Lane is supporting its students’ passion for STEM, creating pathways for developing valuable industry skills, strengthening the focus on career exploration and SEL skills, teaching students to code, and more! 

The principal writer of Game Development Foundations, Asia Bragg, is thrilled to provide equitable technology education to Shirley Lane students. The course is “consistently designed for student interest and engagement. It teaches students how to build their own browser-based video games, which provides an opportunity to learn and gain a useful set of skills for a variety of career paths. Everything from the tools to the presentation of the content is made for students to get a structured and safe introduction to game design and development,” said Bragg. The course places particular emphasis on making computer science easy and more accessible for younger learners so “students can confidently leave the course with a collection of games they made and the technical skills to build their own projects.”

”The students were enjoying this self paced program and learning about technology and coding. It was great that my students were incorporating more tech and coding in their education.” -Mrs. Sajida Boland

The students at Shirley Lane are passionate about hands-on STEM curriculum. The school’s STEM teacher, Sajida Boland, reports that her students are the most eager in classes where they get to participate in experiments and use project-based learning during class activities. Attendance is at its highest when students are engaged in hands-on activities with an emphasis on science and STEM, and Shirley Lane students love learning about science! Mrs. Boland mentioned that, before using the Mastery Coding coding curriculum, she wished that more technology education could be provided, but Mastery Coding’s materials made implementation easy.

Shirley Lane first piloted  Mastery Coding's curriculum during the summer of 2022. What the school administration saw was that students were deeply enjoying the new program, project-based coding, and learning about technology and computer science. Mrs. Boland reported that she felt ecstatic that her “students were incorporating more tech and coding education into their education” and that they “seemed to really enjoy it” too!

Shirley Lane Elementary is truly setting an example in California for STEM education. By placing a special focus on providing resources for elementary students to get involved with project-based coding, the Fairfax School District is ensuring that their students are being set up for success in a world changed by technology. With Mastery Coding’s curriculum, Shirley Lane students will gain excellent insight into STEM careers, strengthen their SEL skills, and learn foundational computer science knowledge. 

Mastery Coding looks forward to working with this remarkable school and set of faculty, staff, and students.

About Mastery Coding

Using a research-based approach to instruction, we provide standards-based computer science, esports, and STEM curriculum that combines critical thinking with project-based fun.

For more information visit www.masterycoding.com

To speak with a specialist, visit www.masterycoding.com/contact


Olivia has background in behavioral ecology and data analysis. She develops and implements SEO, CRO, social media strategy, and authors multi-disciplinary content for our blog, & our social media sites. She's contributed to many of the STEM tie-ins within our curriculum, authored our SEL course, and is a specialist in neurodiverse learning strategies.

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