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Meet our students: one Saturday with our part-time batch

Our very first part-time session in Tokyo started on September 14th with 9 motivated students ready to learn how to build amazing web products!
Three women, six men, 31 years old average and very different backgrounds: an economic development consultant, a UX product manager, a customer solutions architect and a finance manager are joining us this time, among others. All working professionals who could not take 9 weeks off from their busy life to join our full-time bootcamp, but who could not wait to satisfy their curiosity to learn programming.

Today is a special milestone in our program, with our students starting the Javascript module (after going through HTML and advanced CSS), and most importantly, with the very first pitch session of the bootcamp!

The first Javascript day is usually very intense — our students have only one day to learn all the basics, from the particular JS syntax (curly braces, we’re looking at you) to looping, functions or conditionals.

10am — On Saturdays, it starts with a Livecode!

While Tuesdays and Thursdays are fully focused on challenges and pair programming, our Saturdays sessions start with a livecode, the perfect opportunity to ask questions and clarify key notions.
Yann, our part-time bootcamp manager, live-coding a Slack copycat
We start at 10am sharp (ok, 10:05am today) and this morning Yann, our part-time bootcamp manager and front-end fan, is coming back to some of the advanced CSS concepts covered during the week. Time to build a Slack copycat using Flexbox and Bootstrap grid

10:45am — Time for challenges and pair programming ‍ ‍

During the second part of the day we move on to our usual “challenges”: very practical exercises during which our students code small apps (like Slack or a pocket reader) or learn to design cool front-end like Medium. Later in the bootcamp, they’ll also be learning the magic of Rails while building a cocktail app or an Airbnb clone. 

We encourage our students to work in pairs during that part of the day. It pushes them to take time and re-explain what they understood if their buddy for the day is behind, or to have immediate help if they need to. Our teaching team of the day, Hide and Yann, is of course always ready to jump in if challenges get too tricky.

1:00pm — Lunch break

Many options around in Meguro! Whether it’s burgers, Japanese curry, ramen or tonkatsu, the neighborhood offers both quality and variety. Today’s a rainy day, and Javascript requires maximum focus, so most of us choose to go for quick bentos. But on slightly lighter days, we can take a bit more time and enjoy healthy salads together.
Lunch time with everyone!

2:00pm — Time for some quick interviews

While everyone is working on their Javascript challenges, I take some time to sit down with a few of our students to gather their impressions after a couple of months:
“I chose to go for the part-time class to have more time to study by myself between each class and go through the whole process at a slower pace. It’s not always easy to manage my time between work and the bootcamp, but I have a long commute and I can watch the lectures or do flashcards in the train.”

— Shouko, IT support technician

“It’s impressive to see everyone’s dedication despite the fact that we all have full-time jobs. After 2 months I feel we’re much more comfortable, and we’re really looking forward to the jump into our the project part. I spent some time with the current full-time session — part-time is definitely more mellow, but I feel we have a good balance.”

— Grace, Finance Manager

“Part-time was a very convenient option, with us having work or family commitments. In retrospect I also realize it gives me more time to study and absorb the materials. The skills are essentials across all industries — I spent time wishing I could understand web dev, and often wanted to gain those skills. I have no doubt I’ll use those skills in a very near future.”

— Nick, Economist

A good opportunity for me to explain the biggest difference between our part-time and full-time sessions: before each session, we expect our part-time students to watch the day’s video of the lecture, as well as go through a set of flashcards. 

How to do that? Part-time or full-time, all Le Wagon’s students have lifetime access to our teaching platform from the first day they join the bootcamp. Challenges, videos of ALL the lectures, flashcards, as well as useful tutorials and a React mini-bootcamp, this is all you can find on our platform.

5:00pm — First pitches!

We’re ending the day on a special note today, with the very first pitch session. Our 9 students have 3 minutes to pitch one idea, and after a vote, we’ll know which products will be developed during the last month of the program.
Gavin pitching his apartment search product
And this group is not short of innovative ideas: simplifying apartment search for foreigners, Discovering new artists, supporting humanitarian aid, or making commute less boring, among others — Their Demo Day planned in March 2020 promises to be a fun one.

They still have a few more things to learn before jumping into these projects though! After completing the Javascript module, they will be going through the most important module of the whole bootcamp: Rails. This module will allow them to combine everything they’ve learnt so far, and to turn their knowledge into actual web applications.

6:30pm — Dinner and drinks

Let’s make it clear, we do not hang out every single Saturday. But after a productive Javascript day and a great pitch session, some of us decided to go out and unwind around a well-deserved drink.

No pictures though — You’ll have to join us to discover that part of the bootcamp

Curious about our part-time bootcamp? Our next part-time session in Tokyo will start on March 21st, and applications are open! 

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