How the Video Game Design Club Is Teaching Kids About STEM While Making Games

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With the ongoing surge in technology, STEM education is more crucial than ever. But how do you keep it interesting for kids? Enter the Video Game Design Club – a place where gaming and STEM intersect.

The Video Game Design Club was founded by Carl Holden, who is no stranger to the business world. Back in 2012, during his Junior year at UAH, he co-founded Zellus Marketing, a full-service marketing agency, with his partner Craig Stults.

With over 50 clients across three states, Zellus specializes in SEO and AI/automation. But come 2018, Carl’s passion for game design led him to a fresh, innovative venture – the Video Game Design Club.

“I’ve always dabbled in game design as a hobby and saw that there were almost no STEM activities for kids outside of school that meet regularly like karate or dance,” Carl told us.

The Start of the Video Game Design Club

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Starting with an unexpected win at a startup competition, Carl used the prize money to bring his dream of teaching game design to life. The Video Game Design Club’s success was apparent from the start – over 200 people attended their open house, and a dozen kids signed up.

For three years, they taught kids everything about video game creation, from graphics to writing.

Though the pandemic brought challenges and an eventual closure in 2022, the community’s desire for the Video Game Design Club’s return was evident.

“Like everyone else, COVID was hard and I had some kids of my own so I closed it officially in early 2022, but the emails from parents have never stopped,” Carl told us.

Due to the love from the community and requests from parents, the club is gearing up for its grand re-opening in 2023.

How the Video Game Design Club is Revolutionizing STEM Education

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The revamped Video Game Design Club program offers a unique approach. It teaches STEM careers through game design principles.

Every month, kids dive into a different STEM or game design career. From programming to aerospace engineering, students use tools like Minecraft Education and get hands-on experience in various professions.

Carl emphasizes that the Video Game Design Club is not just a school, it’s a club. It’s a place of experimentation and exploration.

And the best part? Kids earn real physical badges for every activity they complete.

Who Should Join the Video Game Design Club?

If your child enjoys games like Minecraft, Roblox, or Fortnite Creative, then the Video Game Design Club is the place for them.

While many schools struggle to incorporate enough STEM into their curriculum, the Video Game Design Club fills that gap, making STEM education accessible and fun.

“All kids need more STEM,” Carl told us. “Our schools are strapped just teaching the core curriculum. If you are waiting for them to add more STEM, you might as well give up. It’s not that they don’t care, it’s a public service with limited bandwidth.”

This is where the Video Game Design Club is stepping in and looking to bridge that gap. For a monthly fee of $195, members enjoy:

  • 8 hours of engaging STEM activities
  • A 3-hour video game party/social
  • Access to exclusive game servers
  • Use of paid software

While the price might seem steep, Carl is confident that the value and experience the Video Game Design Club offers is unparalleled in the market.

“If you wait until college for them [your kids] to find out what they want to do, you’ve really waited too long,” Carl told us.

“What if your child is the next rocket science genius? A world-class 3D modeler? How will they ever know their calling in life if all they do is math equations on a sheet of paper?”

For those concerned about the membership fee, Carl told us that he is working on collaborating with nonprofits to provide scholarships. If you need a scholarship, feel free to reach out to Carl.

Further, if you’re interested in sponsoring a child, you’ll receive regular updates about their progress and achievements.

A Space for Kids to Learn and Grow

Ask Carl about the best part of the Video Game Design Club, and he won’t hesitate: “100% the kids.”

Without the conventional pressures of grading or “being right,” the club is a place where kids can explore, experiment, and sometimes fail, but always learn and grow.

In a world that’s rapidly advancing, the Video Game Design Club stands as an opportunity to show kids the vast universe of possibilities in STEM. It’s not just about equations and spelling, but discovering passions, talents, and the sheer joy of creation.

To learn more or register, visit their official website for a comprehensive FAQ.