BBC micro:bit projects & update

It’s been some time since since we first announced our partnership with the BBC micro:bit. We’re now really pleased to share with you the launch of six projects we’ve created for this device, as children in schools all over the country receive them from today (22nd March).

All our micro:bit projects are available to view on the Code Club projects page. Each project takes about an hour to complete and are all suitable for children from KS2 onwards. The project pages link to an emulator, so even if you don’t have a micro:bit, you can still have a go at trying out the projects online.

There are projects to make an interactive badge, a reaction game and a compatibility tester to “rate your mates”! These step by step guides are easy for children to follow, and introduce the basics of physical computing using the micro:bit in an engaging way.

More about the projects:

microbit-smile

Interactive badge – Create an interactive badge that will show your mood to your friends. Press a button on your micro:bit to change what’s displayed. This project introduces the idea of attaching sequences of code to events.

Frustration – The aim of the game is to guide a wand along a course without making contact. Making contact will add one to the player’s score – the player with the lowest score wins. In this project children will learn how to use variables in making a wire-loop game.

Fortune Teller – Ask your micro:bit a question and press a button (or shake it) to get an answer. In this project children will learn how to use selection and random numbers.

Against the Clock – Make a timer to challenge your friends! This project introduces the concept of repetition.

Rate Your Mates – Make a compatibility program where 2 users press a button on the micro:bit, which will then tell them their compatibility percentage. This project makes use of variables, selection and repetition.

Reaction – An image will be displayed on the micro:bit after a random amount of time – the first person to press their button is the winner. This project introduces the AND and NOT boolean operators.

All our micro:bit projects use Code Kingdoms’ JavaScript editor. You can find an introductory guide to using this editor on the Code Club projects site.

microbit

The BBC will be providing us with 20,000 micro:bits so that all our active Code Clubs can get a chance to use them.

Though we don’t have the micro:bits in our hands just yet, we can say that in the next few weeks we will have further information for all our active clubs about how they can apply for micro:bits – so stay tuned!

To check out Code Club’s micro:bit projects, visit jumpto.cc/microbit. You can also find out more general information about using the micro:bit here.

Code Club are hiring!

We are looking for three dedicated and energetic Regional Coordinators to join the Code Club team. To give you an insight into what this role has to offer, Tim Wilson, Regional Coordinator for the West Midlands and coffee aficionado, gives you the lowdown on a typical day’s work.


My Tuesday was like every other day in that it is very untypical! One of the greatest things about the role of Regional Coordinator is that no two days are the same.

Tea and BiscuitI started my day in a coffee shop (for me, this is not unusual!) by looking at my daily tasks, setting up tweets to promote upcoming Code Club activities and to see what I need to follow up on. I then went through and responded to emails received overnight.

I then had coffee.

During the morning I spent a little time reviewing what I did the previous day when I was at Oxford Brookes University delivering a day of workshops to PGCE students, all potential Code Club volunteers about to head off on placements at primary schools in Oxfordshire and beyond. I went through some of the specific discussions with individuals and sent a personalised follow up email to all attendees.

I then set up an event on Eventbrite for an upcoming Code Club meetup in April at the University of Wolverhampton, who have been very supportive in promoting Code Club to their staff and students.

I then had more coffee and conversed with some of my colleagues on Slack about an upcoming meeting at Code Club HQ in London.

EmailDuring the rest of the morning, I responded to more enquiries from potential volunteers and partner organisations, then contacted a number of Code Clubs who were not yet active to help them set up. Then, I prepared for a careers event at Solihull College, as well as helping our Teacher Training team with fulfilling training courses at schools in the Birmingham area.

I then had more coffee and some lunch.

In the afternoon, I packed a bag with events materials and went to deliver a Code Club training course for a major software publishing company in Birmingham. This company have sponsored Code Club by investing in their staff to become volunteers and run Code Clubs across the city.

Much more coffee was consumed.

I returned home and finished the day by responding to more emails and tweets before starting on my monthly Regional Newsletter which goes out to all club volunteers and hosts across the region.


Has Tim’s caffeine fuelled day piqued your interest about working for Code Club? Find out more about the roles on offer at https://www.codeclub.org.uk/jobs

Celebrating British Science Week across the UK

11th-20th March is British Science Week, celebrating science, technology, engineering and maths in the UK.

At Code Club, we’re marking the occasion by taking part in several awesome science and computing events around the country. This weekend, we kicked things off with a couple of great events in Leeds and Manchester:

Leeds Raspberry Jam

Our interim Regional Coordinator for the North East & Yorkshire, Charlotte, alongside Code Club’s Senior Content & Curriculum Manager, Rik, attended Raspberry Jam’s “Yorkshire Mars Mission” on Saturday. They led two sessions, one using our space-themed Scratch project, “Space Age” which the children used to calculate their age on different planets. Rik & Charlotte also gave an introduction to the BBC micro:bit, completing our interactive badge project.

Getting girls excited about coding (and football!)

Liz, our Regional Coordinator in the North West, was at the National Football Museum on Sunday, offering an introductory coding workshop for local Brownies. There were 48 girls in total who attended the coding workshop where they created an animation putting female characters into a football gaming. All the day’s eager participants secured themselves a Football Museum badge for coding!

Events coming up…

This week we’ll also be attending the Bing Bang Fair in Birmingham on Friday 18th & Saturday 19th March – find out more and join us there!

To check out what other events are taking place near you for British Science week, visit https://www.britishscienceweek.org/