How-to Guide for Volunteers

Why volunteer?

Check out some testimony from past volunteers:

  • “The best part of my experience was that the entire class were women and people of color. It bodes well for the future of our industry to have a chance to reach and excite these kids.”
  • “Especially enjoyed getting to encourage young girls in technology. Felt like I was helping the next generation in my local area.”
  • “I LOVED seeing how excited the kids were. One amazing thing was that the teachers noticed that some of the students who didn’t do as well academically were excelling at thinking like a developer and helping others are them - giving them a place to feel confident.”

Visit a local classroom to inspire students to keep learning computer science. Sign up now!.

Recruit your co-workers to volunteer

Tell your friends and co-workers about the Hour of Code. We have thousands of teachers signing up and looking for volunteers, so ask them to sign up as a volunteer. Ask your employer to get involved. Send this email to your manager, or the CEO.

How you get selected

  • Teachers will be searching for volunteers on our volunteer map.
  • Teachers will be reviewing your profiles on the map, so try to make your profile as complete as possible to increase the chance that a teacher will select you.
  • A teacher will contact you through this form (your email address will never be shared with the teacher).
    • If you are receiving too many requests from teachers, you can always update your preferences by clicking the link to edit your information or unsubscribe, provided at the bottom of any email from a teacher.

How to prepare

Try out tutorials before heading to the classroom.

Get the students excited! Pick out a video to show to help focus the class and get them excited to do an Hour of Code.

  • Check out the Hour of Code Volunteer Toolkit which includes an overview, timeline, preparation material, and marketing material. Everything you need to be ready for your volunteer experience!
  • If you're going to be doing a tutorial during your session, spend 30 minutes trying at least one Hour of Code tutorial.
  • If you're visiting a school, complete any background checks or required paperwork.
  • Review these tips about how to interact with students.
  • Join the conversation on FB, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr with #HourOfCode.
  • Connect with the teacher to discuss what you plan to speak about during your session.
  • If you are a virtual volunteer, test A/V and screen sharing capabilities beforehand.

Day-of Hour of Code Event

When you're hosting an Hour of Code event, follow the sample agenda below to help guide your day. Before then, make sure you sign into the school and greet the teacher the day of the event. Confirm the agreed schedule for the day and discuss any talking points.

Sample agenda:

Time Agenda item
5-10 minutes Introduce yourself:
  • What do you work, what do you do, and what do you love most about your job?
  • What or who inspired you?
  • How did you get interested in computer science?
  • Did you have a mentor?
  • Share a story about how tech affects everyone.
  • 1-5 minutes Show an inspirational video.
    5-10 minutes Ask the students questions and leave time for Q&A.
  • What jobs are they interested in, what are their favorite tech gadgets or apps, and how do they think they are built?
  • Do the students have any questions for you?
  • 60 minutes Code! Walk around, answer questions, and guide them through tough puzzles. Try not to give students the solution outright, instead, try asking them questions so they can answer themselves what went wrong, and encourage students to ask each other if they have questions. Learning from each other is a great learning opportunity.
    1-3 minutes Thank everyone and share inspirational parting words. Hand out any of your company swag (stickers are awesome)!

    After the Event:

    • Share your photos and stories with Code.org at giving@code.org.
    • Remember to enter in your volunteer hours in your company’s volunteer tracking portal.
    • Share about your experience on social media #HourOfCode! See below for tips.
    • If you do take pictures/videos during the event, especially with students, make sure you get teacher/parent permission if you would like to post your stories on social media.

    Volunteering during the Hour of Code FAQ

    I haven't been contacted by a teacher yet. How can I still volunteer?

    Try searching for local schools and call the principal/teacher/front office and ask how you can help.

    How long do classroom visits last for?

    An in-person classroom visit usually lasts 60-90 minutes while a virtual classroom visit usually lasts 20-30 minutes

    What age group is the Hour of Code tutorial appropriate for?

    Code.org designs the Hour of Code tutorials as games and puzzles to engage students of all grade levels (K-12), boys and girls, from all backgrounds. Everyone, even adults can have fun playing our tutorials!