Our Story

First Code Academy was founded with the mission to provide students with digital literacy and computational thinking skills and empowering them to become creators with technology. Using proprietary curriculum adapted from Silicon Valley high schools, our after-school learning programs are incorporated in learning environments designed to stimulate inquiry based learning, logical thinking and creative problem solving.

In 2012, Michelle was working in Silicon Valley as a software engineer and volunteered to teach programming to primary and secondary school students at a program operated at Stanford campus. During that time, she observed how the millennials (digital natives) interact and create with technology and reflected upon her education in Hong Kong.

Moving back to Hong Kong in 2013, Michelle then began to offer coding and STEM courses and develop curriculum for primary and secondary students to learn not just coding skills, but also computational thinking. Since then, our team has taught mobile applications, games, 3D Printing and animation to over 4,000 students from age 5 and above in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Taiwan.

We are excited to empower our next generation to become creative leaders in the digital era, for their future career and for driving social change. Join our journey! :)

Our Vision

"Silicon Valley is a mindset, not a location"

Our Mission

Shaping Future Creators

Our Culture

Done is Better Than Perfect

Words from Our Founder

Silicon Valley Mindset, in Asia

Michelle's Welcome Message

"Growing up in Hong Kong, I have always been fascinated by sciences and maths, but I found my passion in technology and the power of coding only after working in investment banking and starting my first tech startup.

Knowing how to code opened up a whole new world to me, including the opportunities to work at high growth technology startups in the Silicon Valley. I realize that coding also helps shape one’s way of thinking, by structurally decomposing and analyzing a problem. At the same time, coding is also a highly creative act, as it allows me to create in a whole new medium, i.e. technology, to transform my ideas into an app, website etc. That feeling is very empowering.

In addition, my experience in teaching coding and STEM in the Silicon Valley gave me the conviction that coding is the next literacy for the millennial generation.

With that, I felt compelled to help students in Asia gain digital literacy, through First Code’s coding and STEM programs. Developed by a passionate and top caliber team of engineers and educators, our structured, unique and robust curriculum aims to challenge students to think, act responsibly and be a creative leader in the digital era.

I hope that the skills, experiences, mentorships and friendships our students experience at First Code can jumpstart them to a lifelong journey of creative pursuits and endless career possibilities."

- Michelle, Co-Founder & CEO

International Exposure

First Code Students Explore Opportunities Around the World

MIT AppInventor Summit

The AppJamming Summit is an annual regional event to discover the best young app developers in Asia. Students all over the region are invited to submit and pitch their app ideas in our competition to win an all-inclusive sponsored trip to MIT's App Inventor Summit. Since 2014, our students and participants have presented and won prizes including Best Presentation and 3rd Place in Hackathon (Experienced category) in the AppInventor Summit in Boston.

“It was fun and challenging and I really enjoyed it. I learned how to make a better poster and presentation. Now I know what the criteria are, I will definitely win next year”, Anna Desfretier - Winner of Best Presentation Award

PyCon Taiwan

PyCon, short for Python Conference, is an annual convention that gathers industry engineers, researcher and educators who use Python in their work, for the discussion and promotion of the Python language. Our student Isaac Li, 11 years old, was admitted to present his talk, “Learning Python as a pre-teen”, where he shared why he started learning coding and tips and tricks for anyone learning Python for the first time.

TEDx Conference Talk

Aside from international exposure, First Code students also seek out opportunities to share their passion in local community events. One of our Python students, Euan, was invited to speak at a TEDx conference in March 2015. His talk “Coding to Express Yourself” moved the audience with an authentic sharing of his journey of picking up coding and how he expressed his creativity through coding different projects, including a Scratch game as Mother’s Day gift when he was 6 years old!

Watch Euan's Coding to Express Yourself Video

Our Instructors & Approach

Our Leadership

Our instructor team is led by Michelle, our co-founder, and Samiya (picture on the right), a software engineer turned ICT instructor. Samiya holds a degree in Engineering in Electronics and Communication and a certification in Advanced Specialist Diploma in Embedded system.

Both Michelle and Samiya are amongst the first 30 certified Master Trainers by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), having completed the inaugural training course in March 2016. The Master Trainers program trains instructors to not only teach students how to code using App Inventor, but also train other facilitators to teach using the App Inventor platform.

Samiya, one of our lead instructors, is working with students on a robotics challenge

Our Approach

With curriculum adapted from Silicon Valley, our goal is to equip each student with the knowledge and skills to transform their ideas into reality with code.

Adopting a project-based learning approach in the classroom, our students apply programming concepts via hands-on challenges to solve different real world problems. In an increasingly technological world, we empower students with the skills and confidence to explore their creativity, take pride in their creations and pursue their interests.

Our Instructors

First Code instructors is a group of passionate individuals that not only love to teach, but also love working with children.

Our team of instructors take pride in challenging our students to go the extra mile, and see ourselves as facilitators and carers for our students in class. First Code instructors are often found hanging out with students after class, catching up on new STEM topics, coding languages and debugging their projects.

Michelle, our co-founder and lead instructor, is always excited to see First Code's students in the classrooms

Press Coverage

First Code has partnered with many multinational corporations including Google for social impact projects teaching students from underprivileged communities how to code.

Our work has been featured on Forbes, Wall Street Journal, CCTV, CNN, BBC News, and multiple local press including South China Morning Post, TVB, the Straits Times.

For media inquiries, please contact: hellosg@firstcodeacademy.com

Read about what media says about First Code
Press Coverage with First Code Academy