Interested in learning HTML and CSS? Click here to check out BrainStation’s Intro to Web Development Course!
Not gonna lie: for the first half of the Intro to Web Development course I felt WAY behind. As a bit of a perfectionist who has always been used to being at the top of a class, it was an uncomfortable place for me to be. It’s definitely a get-what-you-give type of scenario, and I can see how daily coding practice (even a little bit!) is essential to staying on top of the material. Admittedly, as a mom of a newly-minted toddler with a (very full) full-time job at a busy charity, I am not able to “give” as much time as I would like to these studies. Taking one night to myself a week to attend class is already luxurious!
This led to a bit of panic (and nasty self-talk) in the initial weeks about my ability to “handle” the course. Maybe this route wasn’t for me. I was clearly too old to learn this new trick, as demonstrated by the fact that I was basically the only person in the room not working on a MacBook. Oh my god, was the teacher going to call me out for not doing my homework?!
Classroom Community saved the day. As the weeks rolled by, I really enjoyed meeting new classmates: we were having fun and helping each other out. And in addition to a truly excellent teacher, there are THREE truly excellent TA’s who have an uncanny ability to spot those who are struggling and zip right over to get them right back on track. No one gets left behind, but the whizzes have plenty to keep them moving. I don’t think I have ever been in a classroom that caters so well to such multi-level students, with such varied approaches that appeal to different learning styles. And guys: no one is checking your homework and slapping you on the wrist if you don’t get through it! The responsibility of how far you can take this learning opportunity is wholly in your own hands. Once I realized that, I relaxed a bit and started to feel more confident in what I AM able to do.
Some weeks I muster up to energy to stay up past my bedtime and code in the moonlight, and some weeks it is all I can do to watch a quick web tutorial while I eat lunch at my desk. That has gotten me to a place where everything suddenly started to “click”. I have accumulated enough tools in the toolbox to problem solve on my own when I get stuck, and was pleased to find myself able to keep up during the Week 6 “code-along” class. I am extremely grateful to BrainStation for the care they put into creating such an effective learning environment – I would have never gotten there on my own!