We know from our termly volunteer survey that Code Clubs are keen to try some physical computing projects. Whilst we have a range of amazing resources for the Raspberry Pi over at rpf.io/learn, and are in the process of giving away micro:bits to clubs, we also know that lots of clubs don’t have access to physical computing hardware. Therefore, we think Code Clubs will be very excited about our new Raspberry Pi Sense HAT projects.
The Sense HAT is an add-on board for Raspberry Pi, made especially for the Astro Pi mission – it launched to the International Space Station in December 2015. It includes an 8×8 multi-colour LED display, a 5-button joystick, and sensors for measuring temperature, pressure, humidity, motion and direction. You can find an introduction to the Sense HAT on the Code Club Projects site.
Trinket have developed an awesome online emulator for the Raspberry Pi Sense HAT add-on. We already use Trinket for Code Club’s Python and HTML courses, but this emulator will allow clubs to get a taste of physical computing without needing any equipment.
Any clubs that do have access to a physical Sense HAT can also make use of our new projects, as the same code works on both the online Trinket emulator and the Sense HAT itself.
We have created 3 projects, which use the Python programming language to control the Sense HAT. The projects are:
Countdown Timer: In this project you will use coloured pixels on the Sense HAT to display a countdown timer.
Rainbow Predictor: In this project you will use the temperature and humidity sensors on the Sense HAT to predict when there’s a good chance of spotting a rainbow. When the right conditions are detected you will display a rainbow on the Sense HAT LED display.
Where’s the Treasure? In this project you will use the joystick and LED display on the Sense HAT to play a memory game. The Sense HAT will display a gold coin, and you have to remember its position, and use the joystick to find the hidden treasure.
Trinket are still working on adding more functionality to the online emulator. Once the emulator is finished (in April), we will release 3 more projects. These will make use of the inbuilt magnetometer and accelerometer to sense the device’s movement and direction.
To get started using our new Sense HAT projects, head over to the Code Club Projects site.