Apple to Host Free ‘Hour of Code’ Sessions at Retail Locations, Adds AP Course Material to Swift Playgrounds

Hour of Code, Apple’s annual coding session events held at its retail stores around the world, is returning for the sixth year beginning Saturday, December 1.


According to a new press release from the Cupertino company, the daily Hour of Code sessions, hosted through the Today at Apple initiative, will run until December 14, allowing a two-week window in which people from a wide variety of skill levels can learn more about coding.

For children aged 6 to 12, the Hour of Code sessions will involve learning to code with robots, while the older attendees will use the educational app Swift Playgrounds to learn the basics of coding.

Swift Playgrounds, which launched two years ago, has since been expanded to include more courses, like those for programming toy robots or building apps that use AR, for example.

Apple is also adding a free advanced placement (AP) high school course to the app for the next school year. Called AP Computer Science Principles, the app will give students a chance to earn AP credit for learning to code in Swift. Following the completion of the course, students will also have the opportunity to take a certified “App Development with Swift Level 1” certification exam, which will test students’ knowledge of the Swift language, app developer tools, and core components of apps.

Swift Playgrounds is available as a free download on the App Store, and it’s available in 15 languages including English, Spanish, French, Chinese, and Japanese.