With color-filled screens and toon-style animations, many would probably guess that 6-year-old Kayla Buff was playing a children’s computer game on a laptop. Though not far from that, she and others her age are learning how to code to create their own games. Local youth, ages 7 through 14, can now join in as the coding franchise Code Ninjas has just opened in Santa Clarita, at 26867 Sierra Highway. The business celebrated its grand opening on Saturday. Code Ninjas is all about creating the problem solvers of tomorrow. CEO and co-founder David Graham said in a statement on the franchise website, “I’ve seen how coding education improves lives. Every child should have the opportunity to learn to code and have a great time doing it.” Coding often looks like an endless screen of numbers and symbols that don’t really make sense unless you understand the rules. But children at Code Ninjas approach the concept through an engaging, game-based curriculum that helps participants learn how to build games, while polishing their math, teamwork and problem-solving skills. Opportunities for hands-on projects are also offered, such as robotics and STEM-based projects. Whether a child is new to coding or arrives with some knowledge, Code Ninjas has a self-paced environment to allow for building and learning at one’s own pace. Senseis, or fellow ninjas, are also available for guidance. The franchise’s ninja theme recurs through the levels of achievement as children have the opportunity to travel through the “path of enlightenment,” with levels starting at White Belt for beginners and concluding at Black Belt for more advanced levels. “A lot of people play video games at home but we want to take them from being consumers to creators,” said Heather Cunado, center director at Code Ninjas. “Next time they see their video games they’ll know how the characters are moving and how everything is set up.” For more information and store hours visit codeninjas.com.