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Micro:bit Educational Foundation partners with Code.org to Bring Power of Physical Computing to Educators Teaching the CS Fundamentals Curriculum  

The two non-profit organisations have joined forces to empower teachers using Code.org with free micro:bit physical computing resources, helping bring code lessons to life   

 

The Micro:bit Educational Foundation, the education non-profit on a mission to inspire all children to achieve their best digital future, today announces a partnership with Code.org, a US-based education innovation non-profit, to offer teachers computing resources to complement use of the handheld micro:bit physical computing device as an extension to the Code.org CS Fundamentals curriculum.   

 

With over 70 million students and two million teachers subscribed to Code.org, this partnership will expand the reach of micro:bit’s physical computing resources to students around the world, helping both organisations achieve their shared goal of improving digital literacy and delivering richer teacher materials and tailored support to empower computer science educators in schools.   

 

Elementary school students using Code.org curriculum will now have access to new lessons which will show them how to bring code to life with a partner handheld computing device, the BBC micro:bit. Bringing a physical element to computing education is proven to greatly enhance how children – especially girls - learn how to program. Using the micro:bit helps make connections between the code entered on screen to real life, improving motivation to learn and building confidence with tech as their conceptual understanding grows.   

 

Micro:bit Educational Foundation works closely with schools, educators and some of the world’s biggest tech companies like Arm and Microsoft to help implement computing education at a young age and improve diversity in computer science. Its micro:bit programmable device is already used in over a third of UK schools and there are over 7 million in use internationally, supporting both block-based beginner coding and more advanced text-based skills.   

“Physical computing is a great way to engage students in computer science, and I’m excited that Code.org is expanding its offerings in this maker education space. We’re delighted to partner with to provide physical computing extensions to our existing courses, says Code.org CEO Hadi Partovi of the partnership.  

 

Growing a diverse pipeline of tech talent who contribute to the creation of better technology in the world begins in the classroom. We are invested in excellence in computer science education for younger students and are excited by the size of the impact we can create together with Code.org to bring the benefits of physical computing to young learners.Commented Gareth Stockdale, CEO at the Micro:bit Educational Foundation.  

 

Interested educators can learn more about the Micro:bit Educational Foundation and Code.org on their respective websites. The new micro:bit physical computing resources for CS Fundamentals are now live.  

 

 

About Micro:bit Educational Foundation   

The Micro:bit Educational Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation founded in the UK in 2016, with the aim of inspiring every child to create their best digital future.  

 

We do this by:  

  • Developing hardware and software that inspires young people to get excited about technology and the opportunities it presents for them  
  • Creating free, user-friendly educational resources to support teachers in delivering engaging and creative lessons  
  • Working with like-minded partners to deliver high-impact educational programmes across the globe.  

 

 

About Code.org  

 

Code.org® is an education innovation nonprofit dedicated to the vision that every student in every school has the opportunity to learn computer science as part of their core K-12 education.  

 

The leading provider of K-12 computer science curriculum in the largest school districts in the United States, Code.org also organizes the annual Hour of Code campaign, which has engaged more than 15% of all students in the world.  

EU Code Week: Hillingdon Pupils Crack The Code

 

Pupils from a Hillingdon primary school have been showcasing their coding skills during EU Code Week – a global event which celebrates computer programming. 

 

Launched in 2013, Code Week aims to shine a light on the importance of coding while helping young people build skills for the future. The annual event is growing in popularity and last year over 4 million people in 80 different countries took part. 

 

Children at St Swithun Wells School in Ruislip celebrated Code Week by designing their own computer games and apps using Discovery Education Coding, the award-winning coding service for primary schools created by global edtech leader Discovery Education.

 

Putting their tech skills to the test, they created imaginative games including Burst The Bubbles, using block coding to make bubbles float across the screen and go POP! Older pupils also mastered a game called Hungry Snake, using special commands to move a snake across a desert in search of hidden eggs.

 

Tiffany Bolton, Computing Co-ordinator at St Swithun Wells School said:

 

“Our pupils have really enjoyed taking part in Code Week. It’s so important that we teach children to code, because coding is the future! Today’s students are already tech savvy, but coding gives them a new dimension. It helps them to understand how apps and games work. It’s like telling them a magic secret! Lots of my students say, “I want to code when I grow up”, and Discovery Education Coding has inspired this. They’re excited by coding and talk about it constantly, which can only be a good thing. It’s opened doors to new possibilities and given them a sense of “I can do this!”

 

Pupils taking part in Code Week were excited to share their thoughts on computer programming.

 

Blake 10 said:

“ I love coding because it is interesting and fun. I also like that there are no limits to what you can code and design and you can use your imagination.”

 

Henry 10 said:

 

“Coding lets me be creative and program different things to make them do what I want them to do.”

 

Howard Lewis, Discovery Education’s Managing Director UK and International said:

 

“Coding teaches children important skills, such as critical thinking, problem solving and creativity and it opens doors to future careers . Discovery Education is committed to preparing today’s learners for tomorrow and we’re delighted to provide high-quality and engaging digital resources to help pupils at St Swithun Wells celebrate Code Week.”

 

Used by thousands of pupils, Discovery Education Coding is one of the UK’s leading primary computing resources. Supporting teachers to meet the National Computing Curriculum, it helps pupils to gain a thorough understanding of coding concepts and to  develop computational thinking skills. 

 

To celebrate EU Code Week, Discovery Education Coding is offering schools free sample lessons during the Autumn term at: www.discoveryeducation.co.uk/resources/primary/coding/coding-sample-lessons/

 

Code Week takes place between the 8th and 23rd October 2022. Find out more at codeweek.eu

 

 

COBIS AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION 2022 CODING CHALLENGE: INTERNATIONAL COMPUTING COMPETITION WINNERS ANNOUNCED

COBIS (Council of British International Schools) and Discovery Education are delighted to announce the winners of the 2022 Coding Challenge – a competition for British International Schools which sees students compete with their peers around the world to create a computer game or app.

 

Now in its third year, the prestigious challenge invites students aged 5-12 to unleash their creativity by designing an app using Discovery Education Coding – the award-winning resource for primary schools. Open to COBIS member schools in 76 countries, the competition reaches over 165,000 students globally. 

 

The theme of this year’s competition was ‘A Difficult Journey’ and students taking part were encouraged to create an app simulating a quest. The judges were highly impressed by the wide range of entries and the programming skills shown by entrants as young as 5. 

 

The 2022 winner is 12 year old Kobe, a Year 7 student from Doha College in Qatar. Kobe’s winning app was ‘Fit the Gap’ – an impressive block coding game which sends players on a journey in search of a missing star. The user-friendly app was described by the judges as “sophisticated and mature” with a “very professional and authentic design.”

 

Kobe said: ” I am ecstatic that I won the COBIS App competition, I didn’t believe I could do it, I thought I had a small chance of winning second or third prize, but never imagined that I would come first! My game was based on games like Tetris that I love playing in my free time. I finished the game with only a few hours to spare and I didn’t think much of it. After a while, I had almost forgotten about it, I even wondered if I had submitted it correctly, then I got the email that I had won, and honestly, I’m surprised out of my wildest dreams!” 

 

Kobe’s teacher Ruhul Chowdhury said, “We are very pleased to learn that Kobe has won first place. We would like to thank COBIS and Discovery Education for giving our students an amazing opportunity to participate in this event. It provided them with a platform to create an app based on the theme given. I believe all our students should learn how to create apps, and other digital products and services by learning to program. They need to become creators of technology rather than just the end-users.” 

 

The second place winner was 12 year old Ojas from The Arbor School in Dubai. Ojas’s winning app was ‘The Adventures of Indiana Jones’ – an exciting game in which players search for missing treasure. The game was described by the judges as “exceptionally well designed and authentic.” 

 

Ojas said, “Discovery Education Coding  provides an amazing platform for the students’ interest in programming and STEM. It is an honour to learn and compete with the best and brightest of students across the world. My game program was based on the adventures of Indiana Jones where I attempted to combine fiction with joys of programming. I am really thankful to my teachers at The Arbor School who have always taught me to go that extra mile.” 

 

The third place winner is 11 year old Gosha from English International College in Marbella, Spain. Gosha’s winning app was based on Minecraft, with 3 levels of exciting play. The highly creative app was described by the judges as “complex, inventive and really immersive.”

 

Gosha said, “I loved participating in this year‘s coding competition. I love coding and my teacher, Mr Carlos.Coding is very important to me and I want to be a programmer of games when I grow up. I worked really hard on my game and I’m really proud of myself for achieving this award.”

 

The three winning students were presented with their certificates at special school assemblies this week. First prize winner Kobe also received a $250 Amazon voucher, with the runners-up Ojas and Gosha receiving $150 and $100 vouchers respectively. 

 

Colin Bell, CEO of COBIS, said:

 

“As a student-centred organisation, we are committed to offering enriching opportunities for students worldwide, and so we were delighted to partner with Discovery Education to deliver our third Coding Challenge for students at British international schools. The competition allowed students as young as five to learn how to code and develop valuable skills such as problem-solving, computational thinking, digital literacy and creativity. It was fantastic to see so many students take part, and we were once again blown-away by the impressive talent that the competition showcased.”

 

Howard Lewis, Discovery Education’s Managing Director UK and International said:

 

“Today’s students will do jobs that we can only imagine, so it’s vitally important that we equip them with future-ready skills. Discovery Education is delighted to partner with COBIS to deliver the Coding Challenge to British international schools for the third year running. The competition helps teachers to introduce coding in a fun and accessible way, encouraging a love of computer programming in children from an early age.”

 

BYJU’S FutureSchool predictions for 2022

Spokesperson: Sajid Shariff, Senior Vice President, Global Growth – BYJU’S.

 

  • Individualised learning:
    • During lockdown, 10% of parents reported paying for private tuition, and we expect this trend to continue as parents look towards 1:1 learning options to supplement school-based curriculum. Offering individualised learning experiences will continue to expand in the private education market. Tailoring education to suit each child’s needs is a proven way to educate and guide students to become creative thinkers, as opposed to a one-size-fits-all approach.

 

  • The impacts of missed learning time:
    • We predict that the missed learning time as a result of the pandemic will continue to impact education into 2022, with children having missed out on a third of education time during lockdown. This means that with children behind on core skills including maths, more parents will be looking for additional support in these areas to bring their children up-to-speed and strengthen their self-confidence.

 

  • Importance of recognising the arts in STEAM:
    • We anticipate an increased need for the arts to integrate with typical STEM subjects to spark opportunities for creative, interactive learning across the board. By using real world conceptual learning methods across arts and science, students can build a greater understanding of how different skills, such as communication, problem solving and creative thinking, come together to make better discoveries. With research showing that STEAM improves creative and critical thinking, placing greater importance on developing skills in the arts, such as musical instruments, will be imperative in cultivating a capable interdisciplinary workforce fit for the future.
    • EdTech companies, like BYJU’S FutureSchool, are responding to this need by offering online music, art and animation lessons, helping reach more children and making the arts more accessible. 

 

  • The continuous rise of coding:
    • With an ever-increasing number of coding jobs available, we need to be teaching the fundamentals of coding and logic from an early age to inspire a passion – and aptitude – for it. Teaching children coding from an early age also helps guide them to become creative thinkers and innovators of tomorrow, and has the added benefit of being an important future skill for children. Parents are finding this value of enrolling their children in coding, with our data showing that out of all the BYJU’S FutureSchool classes available, coding is the most popular with nearly half of parents signing up their children for classes.

  

With teachers under an ever-increasing amount of pressure, more parents are likely to turn to supplemental learning to complement their children’s school education. Online education platforms are expected to become even more accessible, with more people gaining access to technology. Our focus at BYJU’S FutureSchool is to inspire children to create versus consume, helping to prepare children for the future. You can find out more here: https://www.byjusfutureschool.com/