Coding, Education, Raspberry Pi

Soldering at Twickenham Coding Evening

For the July meetup, I’m hoping to get Stuart to show us how to solder using the Learn to Solder Zoo Badge Kit from The PiHut. I’ve just written a post on my blog about how to use the kit, but it would be great to demonstrate how to use it in real life!

He’s also going to bring along a 3D printer so if you have any questions about how to use them he can at least attempt to answer.

Coming to the July meet up for the first time is Ben Dornan, a self confessed ‘Arduino Addict’ so I can’t wait to see what he’ll bring to show us all.

Don’t forget you can get your tickets here.

See you all soon,

Cat

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Coding, Education

Review – To code or not to code…

My students knew more about coding than I did, so I decided to take matters into my own hands and get ahead of their game. Trying to even the playing field: one 33 year old versus the 7 year olds. I went to my first meet up feeling a bit weary, would it be a room full of people speaking a (computer) language I had no chance of understanding? I couldn’t have been more wrong, I felt welcome from the minute I walked through the door and dove right into looking at the different programmes and gadgets available. I had a go at several things and cursed myself for not having brought my Ipad so I could download the programmes straight away.

After such a great experience I was very excited to come to the next meeting armed with my iPad. I got one-to-one tutoring on Scratch Jr and the most impressive thing was that I was able to get help even though I’d downloaded the app in my mother tongue, Swedish. The volunteers are amazing and it’s a wonderful “hands on” experience. I was encouraged to code a whole sequence on the large screen myself and the atmosphere was just as inclusive as the first time. A mix of people from different backgrounds and levels of experience all coming together to share and explore.

I can’t wait to go again, so what are you waiting for? Come along and share the fun, programme a unicorn’s hat or play music using fruit. You will love it and I’m sure your students will too!

Linda Lindberg

Teacher at the Swedish school in London

Coding, Education, Raspberry Pi, Twickenham

Review – Twickenham Coding Evening June

I attended the Twickenham Coding Evening for the first time this month and was really glad I did – thank you Cat for organising such a useful and friendly event!

As a secondary trained ‘ICT’ teacher, I have slowly but surely been adapting my teaching to the new computing curriculum, incorporating a bit of Scratch here and a bit of Python there. I have also been taking a keen interest in practical computing projects that use ‘MaKey MaKeys’ and ‘Raspberry Pis’; however, having never seen these in action in real life, I have been reluctant to commit precious budget to purchasing either! The friendly faces, advice and fun practical activities and projects on display at the meeting have inspired me. I am now the proud owner of two ‘Makey Makeys’, a roll of tin foil and a tub of playdoh, and my Raspberry Pi is in the pipeline.

I am definitely the kind of person that needs to talk to real people as opposed to chat on message boards and this gave me an opportunity to do just that in a very welcoming and informal environment. Thanks again for the opportunity!

Amy Box

St Marks Catholic School, Hounslow

Coding, Education, Raspberry Pi

Coding Evenings

In January 2015, inspired to do something to help support teaching the new computing curriculum, I organised an event in a local pub and invited local schools, code clubs, coder dojos and anyone else I could find who was vaguely interested in coding and the new computing curriculum.

At the first event there were 12 of us in a local pub, which included 3 of my friends, and we chatted about strategy, Raspberry Pi and Code Club. The overwhelming response to the evening was that people wanted more of the same – an informal opportunity to chat about the curriculum with a pint or a glass of wine and the opportunity to have a play.

The Coding Evening was born…

Six months and four events later, and I’ve been asked by several people if they can host their own Coding Evenings in their local area so I’m hoping to give you information here about hosting your own evenings, about my evenings as they happen and about other evenings and where you can find an event in your local area. The goal is to encourage other communities to follow my model to give teachers the opportunity to discuss ideas and meet up in a relaxed environment – no lectures or workshops, just people bringing what they know and sharing with each other, but the whole thing relies on communities coming together to support each other.

So, if you’re interested in hosting your own events, get in touch – I’ll update this site as soon as I can with further information!

Cat