Chicago students taking part in Hour of Code class

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Students in more than 180 countries are taking part an hour-long coding class this week, including more than 700 students at Peck Elementary School on the city's Southwest Side.

One of those Peck students participating in the "Hour of Code" is Alexis Diaz, 9, who wants to tackle the secrets behind what makes the droid R2D2 move.

"At the beginning, I thought I couldn't, but then I learned that with coding it's possible," Diaz said.

The demonstration at a morning pep rally on Monday definitely got his attention.

Principal Okab Hassan explained to them that their favorite computer games all use code, too.

"Kids like to play games. They want to know how they make maneuver and how to beat the game," Hassan said.

Businessman, investor and philanthropist Robert F. Smith came out to help explain it to the kids as well.

"It is a dynamic of human engagement with software. This isn't something that just happens. You have the capacity to make it happen," said Smith, chairman and CEO of Vista Equity Partners.

His team from Vista Equity Partners helped the kids as they took to their laptops, and they seemed pretty excited about what they could learn.

This is one of more than 122,000 Hour of Code events registered across the world in 2017. The course is available in more than 45 languages.
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