Paul Curzon’s doing some Holiday Workshops for young people @Ri_science

Yellow background with black text advertising the names of the three workshop themes. Each theme has two workshops, one for kids age 7-9, one for kids age 10-12

The Royal Institution has a large series of STEM Holiday Workshops for young people, with sessions for different age groups. Paul Curzon is running six workshops over three days, each day having a theme, with a morning session for 7-9 year olds and the afternoon session for 10-12 year olds. Each place costs £35 (£29.75 for Ri Young Members. Financial support may be available from The Potential Trust (info in each link below).

Holiday workshops: The magic of computer science

Learn the logic of computing in this fun magic-based workshop.

In this workshop, Paul Curzon will demonstrate some real magic tricks and teach the group how they are done so they can do the tricks themselves.

When you learn to be a magician, it turns out you are learning the skills needed to be a great computer scientist too: computational thinking.

Students will then use the magic to learn the linked basics of computer science and see what computational thinking is all about and how both magicians and computer scientists rely on it.

[Magic workshop 1, age 7-9, 11am-1pm] [Magic workshop 2, age 10-12, 2-4pm]

 

Holiday workshops: AI, but where’s the intelligence?

Explore the basics of artificial intelligence in this hands-on workshop.

We all know the movie plot, evil robots and computers taking over the world, but what is the reality? We will explore artificial intelligence, the field of science that tries to build ‘thinking machines’. How are they built? Are they really intelligent? And what is intelligence anyway? We will also ask some interesting questions about a well-known ‘thinking machine’, you! Along the way we will play some games including building a working brain to play snap out of rope, tubes, and you.

[AI workshop 1, age 7-9, 11am-1pm] [AI workshop 2, age 10-12, 2-4pm]

 

Holiday workshops: Becoming a usability expert: Why are gadgets so hard to use?

Why are so many computer gadgets so hard to use? (especially, apparently, for parents!) It’s because most are poorly designed. To design gadgets better, programmers need to understand people not just technology. Usability experts, who do understand people including why we make mistakes, help programmers improve their designs. We will investigate bad designs and see why they are bad, explore what makes good design and look at how the experts use the science of how people think to make gadgets easier for everyone to use, setting you on the path to becoming a usability expert.

[Usability workshop 1, age 7-9, 11am-1pm] [Usability workshop 2, age 10-12, 2-4pm]

 

Other workshop topics (given by different people) include the following, and most have a couple of different versions of the session, stratified by audience age. See the full list of holiday workshops (and talks).

  • Forensics
  • ScratchMaths – coding with maths
  • The mathematics of rainbows
  • Anamoprhic art
  • Where is engineering?
  • Geometry, code and embroidery
  • Extract your own DNA
  • Chases and escapes (curvy maths)
  • How big is the universe?
  • The magic of computer science – itemised above
  • AI, but where’s the intelligence – itemised above
  • Making music and sound with BBC Micro:bit
  • Magnets and motors
  • Intro to the BBC Micro:bit
  • Stories from maths
  • Mathematics for astronomers
  • Loudspeakers and acoustics
  • Becoming a usability expert: Why are gadgets so hard to use? – itemised above
  • Fantastic plastic
  • Bacterial evolution
  • Building with STIXX
  • Electrical circuits
  • Drawing Islamic geometry
  • Mathemagics
  • Cosmetic chemistry
  • Skateboards to starships (laws of motion)
  • Mathemagics
  • Networks (Euler)

 

FREE, funded digital / computing / cyber security / big data skills training for Londoners

There are free online, self-paced digital (and other) courses available for those who live or work in London, part-funded by the European Commission. Applicants need to be in work (including self-employed) or on the Kickstarter scheme.

The pre-recorded courses are taught by lecturers from London South Bank University and Ravensbourne University in Greenwich, who’ve partnered with Dagile to offer the courses online. A snapshot of the courses available is tomorrow and full details are in the FAQ.

A list of the available courses (see plain text version at the end of the post).

Lists of other courses
The Skills Toolkit https://nationalcareers.service.gov.uk/find-a-course/the-skills-toolkit

Skills Bootcamps https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/find-a-skills-bootcamp/list-of-skills-bootcamps

 

Plain text version of the courses listed in the image

1. Basic Skills – units
• Maths – making calculations
• ESOL speaking and listening

2. Creative Digital – units
• Creating and publishing web pages
• Creating and manipulating digital images
• User interface and User Experience design
• Introduction to web design and development

3a. Digital & IT Skills – course
• Big Data & Cyber Security

3b. Digital & IT Skills – units
• Big Data
• Database with SQL
• Programming methods
• Programming fundamentals
• Introduction to Cyber Security

4a. Digital Marketing – course
• Digital marketing

4b. Digital Marketing – units
• The marketing environment
• Introduction to marketing
• Developing a marketing plan
• Principles of social media advertising

5. Leadership & Management – units
• Business planning
• Management & Leadership

 

 

TLC Newsletter – Nov / Dec 2018

An early merry Christmas from Teaching London Computing (TLC) with our second newsletter (previous newsletters can be found here). There are more details of the free Christmas talk taking place on Wednesday 5 December 2018 and plenty of festive resources for your classroom.

Table of Contents

  1. Free Christmas evening lecture on Game AI for schools and families
  2. New issue of CS4FN – out now!
  3. Christmas classroom resources
  4. E4L2C – Exercises for Learning to Code, new from TLC / CAS London Master Teachers – an online course
  5. NCCE – National Centre for Computing Education
  6. Free course from CAS and Microsoft on Creative Computing
  7. iDEA – the Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award – online learning supported by the Duke of York
  8. Rocket Fund – £5,000 match funding available for projects starting after 2 Dec 2018

1. FREE schools talk – Game AI Unleashed! IET / QMUL Christmas talk – 5 Dec


Next Wednesday (5 December 2018) we have a free family-friendly twilight talk on Game AI, aimed at secondary-aged kids but all welcome. There will be free mince pies afterwards too. The talk will be held at QMUL in the People’s Palace’s Great Hall (this building is next to the main Queen’s Building, on Mile End Road). Nearest tube station is Stepney Green (buses 25/205), talk starts at 5.30pm. Bring your class!
[Register for free tickets][Full details][Flyer]

2. CS4FN issue 25 on wearable computing is here


The magazines have been printed and subscribers should be receiving copies this week so keep an eye out for them. You can also download free PDF copies (and sign up to be on the mailing list) here. We are grateful to the Institute of Coding and to King’s College London for their support for this issue. Let us know the articles you like most and share some pics with us on Twitter @cs4fn / #cs4fn

3. TLC Christmas classroom resources – download and print, and adapt for your classroom

We have Christmas pixel puzzles, Doodle art algorithms to draw a Christmas tree, or get your class to edit a Christmas greeting program in Python. We also have some computing-themed cracker mottos and are always on the lookout for more… have a look at our ‘at a glance’ Christmas computing for more.

4. E4L2C – Exercises for Learning to Code – free on Teaching London Computing

CAS London Master Teachers have created E4L2C (Exercises for Learning to Code) a range of free exercises to help people gain skills and confidence in using Python. There are beginners, intermediate and advanced exercises – Beginner exercises (Sequence, Selection, Iteration), Intermediate exercises (Arrays, Functions, File Handling), Advanced exercises (Databases). All are free to access but in order to get feedback and find out how people are using them we are asking people to contact Trevor Bragg for a password.

5. New NCCE website – National Centre for Computing Education

https://teachcomputing.org/ – scroll down the page to find out how you can sign up to hear more and get involved.

“The Centre will start working with schools across England later this year, improving teaching and driving up participation in computer science at GCSE and A-Level.

The Centre will operate virtually through a national network of up to 40 school-led computing hubs to provide training and resources to primary and secondary schools, and an intensive training programme for secondary teachers without a post A-Level qualification in computer science.” [Press release]

6. Creative Computing for KS3 – courses in London and elsewhere

Computing At School, in association with Microsoft UK, is delighted to announce a two-day funded* course which will enable new and aspiring Heads of Computing in secondary schools to develop the skills and techniques to build a creative and innovative curriculum accessible for all and to lead a thriving subject in their school.

*Teachers in Category 5 and Category 6 opportunity areas qualify for FREE places, including cover.  To apply for one of these places please use the registration form here. Funding is only available for state-funded schools. For teachers applying from outside these areas the cost will be £200 (plus booking fee) for both days of the course.

The London course starts on Friday 11 January 2019 and takes place at BCS offices in Southampton Street.

A little more detail is at the end of this email [full details on CAS website]

7. iDEA – Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award

https://idea.org.uk/  – the free scheme, supported by the Duke of York, helps people enhance their chances in the job market with digital and enterprise skills. Online challenges are split into four main categories, each with its own series of badges to be won – citizen, worker, maker, entrepreneur and gamer.

8. Rocket Fund – £5,000 available for IT projects launched this half-term

A match funding pot is available from Rocket Fund for ICT related projects this term – with 20x £250 boost available.

Rocket Fund is a free fundraising platform for schools. So far they have helped 250 schools raise over £200,000. They have just launched a new campaign with 20x £250 boosts available for tech projects launched after 3rd December. Is there any tech you’d like to buy? See Rocket Fund’s website for more details.

More detail on the Creative Computing courses

“We all want our pupils to experience an aspirational curriculum for computing that develops their knowledge, their skills and above all their interest in the subject but this can be hard when we’re struggling to keep abreast of the subject ourselves! This two-day course will help to plug some of those gaps and will help teachers who are in the early days of establishing the subject in their school to encounter engaging lessons and how they can be integrated into an inspirational scheme of work.

The course will be delivered across two days (the first in the early Spring term; the second in the Summer term) in a number of locations in England.”

If you’d like to receive a copy of the newsletter in future please use the orange form on this page.

 

 

TLC newsletter – October 2018

We’re trialling a newsletter for those who’ve signed up to be kept informed of Teaching London Computing’s activities and resources. This is sent to our subscribers* and added to the website for everyone.

*To subscribe, use the orange form here.

1. Black History Month

Screenshot 2018-10-29 09.20.11

Our current resource celebrates Black History Month with information about several black computer scientists. You might also like this infographic – 7 Black Pioneers in Computer Science, by Jordan Streeter. Find out more about diversity in computing.

2a. Hallowe’en fun
There are lots of free activities to download on our site with new ones being added every month as time permits. From the Hallowe’en vaults we have some slightly spooky puzzles for younger children including a colour-in pumpkin (a Pixel Puzzle) and a word puzzle (Kriss-Kross).

Screenshot 2018-10-29 09.22.06

2b. Other resources

Maths Kriss-Kross puzzles involve multiplication to get the answer – “Solve these maths puzzles as a way to develop logical thinking and pattern matching skills needed to enjoy both computing and maths, while practising maths too.

3. New issue of CS4FN – out soon
The latest issue of CS4FN magazine (issue 25) will be on Wearable Computing and should be out next month. PDF copies of the magazine will be posted online soon.

Currently you can catch up with issue 24 (and all our back issues) here.

If you’re not already receiving FREE copies of CS4FN at your school please sign up here (UK schools only), and pass on the info to a colleague. We have a few back issues too (you can use the same page to request them) and we’re happy to send some out while stocks last.

For primary-aged pupils (~9-12) we also have copies to give away to UK schools of issues 1, 2 and 3 of A Bit of CS4FN.

4. New computing courses from King’s College London
The BlueJ outreach team based at Kings College, London (run by Michael Kolling and Neil Brown) is offering FREE CPD workshops to teachers of KS3 and KS4 and KS5 pupils. These need a minimum of six teachers to run and require a venue with computers / laptops, internet connection and a projector / screen.

Summary
There are 3 Workshops available and they require a minimum of 6 attendees:
• Teaching Greenfoot with Stride – Programming after Blocks (KS3)
• Teaching Java with Greenfoot (KS4)
• Teaching Java with BlueJ (KS4/5)

More details about each workshop and what Greenfoot, Stride and BlueJ are available here. To book a workshop please email team@bluej.org with three dates/times.

5. Christmas Lecture – save the date: 5 December 2018
Each year the Computer Science department at Queen Mary University of London has a celebratory free (Eventbrite ticketed for catering purposes) Christmas Lecture for schools and families, with mince pies. This year the topic will be Game AI – we’ll add a link to this page when the tickets go live and there’s more information.

Game AI Unleashed!
Wed 5 Dec 2018
FREE (attendance is free but please register in advance)
Doors: 5pm, lecture 5:30-6:30pm, drinks and mince pies afterwards
More info and tickets: http://www.eecs.qmul.ac.uk/news-and-events/events/items/game-ai-unleashed.html

Flyer (PDF): IET-QMUL Christmas Lecture 2018

Information about our previous Christmas lectures: 2017, 2015