Augusta Ada King-Noel, Countess of Lovelace

English mathematician and writer, chiefly known for her work on Charles Babbage's proposed mechanical general-purpose computer, the Analytical Engine. She was the first to recognize that the machine had applications beyond pure calculation. As a result, she is often regarded as the first to recognize the full potential of a "computing machine" and the first computer programmer.

SDMC's Ada group is for students developing a general level of experience and skill in computer programming. Ada is not a competition-training group; however, the overall plan and development of the group is conceived with an understanding that students in this ability range will commonly have an interest in the prevailing CS competition at this level, the American Computer Science League programming contest (ACSL).

Ada class experience will include instruction on a series of Computer Science topics blended with project-oriented practical experience. There will typically be a blend of lecture and direction by an instructor and practical facilitation by teaching aides. Students should bring their own laptop devices (fully charged).

Ada admits students of grade levels 4 - 8. We note that this includes one grade level lower than the threshold for admission to SDMC core math program (5th). The is not an error, but is related to the structure of the ACSL. (Note that with instructor approval, 8th graders who are confident in their preparation may transition to our next-level CS group, Turing.)

Participation in Ada is not limited to SDMC's "core" math students - SDMC recognizes that Computer Science is a distinct discipline and that many students may have Computer Science as a primary interest rather than mathematics per se. Thus, students may "register" for SDMC's Computer Science independently of our core math program. To do so at this time, we ask applicants to "sign up" using a simple email process as follows:

Please copy/paste the following template into an email message and enter the expected information:

Student Sign-up Event: Ada

SDMC ID Code: (if not an SDMC member, leave blank.)

Student name:

School grade:

School name:

Student email:

Parent name:

Parent email:

Home phone:

Send your signup message to

Adult volunteers are needed in this class to assist the instructor and provide necessary supervision. Besides supervision, an important responsibility of parent volunteers is to police the classroom at the end of each class session, to be sure the facilities are as clean and orderly as at the outset.

The "Ada Coordinator" is a particular parent volunteer who assists SDMC in these matters.

Instructor Bio:

Sue Y. Xu (“Coach Young”): Sue received her BS and MS in Computer Engineering from Nanjing University, China. and her MS in Computer Science from Dartmouth College. She worked as a bioinformatics programming analyst, lecturer, and IT consultant at Washington University in St. Louis, Harvard University, and the Italian National institute of Genetics and Biophysics. She has written open source programs for NIH sponsored genome sequencing and gene analysis programs, and lectured on using technology for science research. After moving to California, Sue worked as enterprise architect and technical program manager for both startup and fortune 500 companies. She is currently Amazon Web Services (AWS) certified solution architect and works at Sony interactive Entertainment in San Diego, California. Sue also teaches undergraduate course Object Oriented Programming in Java at University of Phoenix San Diego campus.