Students Teach New-Tech Skills to Top Brass

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First Lady McCray and Schools Chancellor Fariña create their own "scratch project" using coding. M.S. 223 students direct the two women in the project.

Sixth graders from M.S. 223 were the teachers on Wednesday, teaching Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña and First Lady Chirlane McCray the ins and outs of computer code.

Crowded around a podium at the venue for Internet Week New York, the students took turns walking the women through a coding project, giving them a chance to try it for themselves. 

Chancellor Carmen Fariña and First Lady Chirlane McCray listen to students from M.S. 223 teach a lesson on coding. (Photo: Natalie Fertig/WNYC)

Flanked by a handful of middle schoolers, McCray volunteered to lead the project, with Fariña assisting.

“It doesn’t matter if you fail,” one of the students reassured them. “Fall down seven [times], get up eight.”

The students pointed out instructions as they went along. Annalis Ramirez said she enjoyed teaching adults.

“It actually does make learning more fun,” she said. “People who are older than you and would be more wiser than you - you get to see them work hard and do the same work you usually do yourself.”

Brianna Gutierrez (2nd on L) and other students assist the First Lady (center) and Schools Chancellor (right) with their own coding project. (Photo: Natalie Fertig/WNYC)