It’s been a busy time for me as 2015 has drawn to a close and 2016 has begun.
So, the year kicks off properly with BETT, the annual exhibition of technology in education. Last year, the week of BETT, I hosted the first Coding Evening for teachers in the Stokes and Moncreiff in Twickenham and what a year it has been – Twickenham has hosted seven events, Peterborough has hosted two, Southend has hosted an event and we’ve held one event at Mozilla in central London to bring everyone together. Over that time we have brought together teachers, professionals, hobbyists and lots of other lovely people to help promote and develop the best way to teach coding to teachers. We’ve been able to offer free drinks and free gifts thanks to generous sponsorship from Pimoroni, 4tronix, Fuze and PiTop and we’ve had lots and lots of fun! Let’s hope we can continue supporting and sharing in 2016.
So, on Friday 22nd January, I’ll be at BETT where I will be doing a beginners’ work shop in the STEAM village at 11.30am for Raspberry Pi (sign up here) – I plan on giving a really basic introduction to using a Raspberry Pi with Scratch and a PiStop so if you think this might interest you then pop along. Next, I will be doing a talk for Exa Education to spread the word about Coding Evenings and talk about our successes so far so if you fancy coming along to hear that, I will be on the Exa stand from 12.30pm. Finally, if you’re a teacher at BETT, it is well worth signing up for the giant TeachMeet in the evening – once again, I’ve signed up for a two minute micro talk to that I can tell all of the assemblied teachers about Coding Evening, but the nature of the event means that I may not get a chance to speak (fingers crossed).
On Saturday 23rd January, I’ll be at BETT again, this time helping Ben Nuttall out with his special Raspberry Jam sharing the good news about using Raspberry Pi in schools. Come along if you can – there will also be a geek meet up after the event if you’re interested in joining us for pleasant conversation and nice food.
So, the next step in my plan for world domination will be to host workshops for parents to introduce ways to get their kids coding at home. For the parent workshops, I think I would need to charge to cover equipment costs, but I often get parents asking for advice to get started with coding and Pi so I think it would be a good opportunity to help and support a wider range of people with the basics of coding. Get in touch if you think Coding Evenings for Parents might be something you’d like to help or support, especially with buying equipment or helping to buy drinks for the Coding Evenings for Teachers as a motivation to get more tired and exhausted teachers to attend after a long day at school.
Hannah at Peterborough Coding Evening (who also helps run Peterborough Raspberry Jam), launched the Peterborough Coding Evening Facebook Page this week, which inspired me to create one for Twickenham too so sign up and like the pages to get regular updates of what happening!!
So, here are the details of all of the upcoming events:
Twickenham Coding Evening first birthday (organised by me) – Thursday 28th January
Peterborough Coding Evening (organised by Hannah Mills) – no eventbrite yet, but on March 8th at The Brewery Tap pub in Peterborough
West Berks Coding Evening (organised by Stephen Manson – currently a paid for event, but he is hoping to get funding to refund ticket costs) – Wednesday 17th March
Southend Coding Evening – TBC, previous event was at the Temporary Art Project in Southend
Hopefully we’ll see you at one of these events soon.