Our first blog of the academic year from the students is by three of our current Year 13 Sixth Form students, who planned and delivered a coding camp for younger students during the summer break.
Over the summer holidays, I organized and held a programming camp called Pi Camp using the Raspberry Pi for children in the local area aged 6-12. We held two courses both lasting two days. This involved a lot of planning and preparation! Such as organizing sponsorship, funding, daily activities and getting local support. The biggest challenge I faced was getting hold of the Raspberry Pi’s as they are in very high demand. After lots of phone calls and emails, Raspberry Pi very kindly agreed to help me source the equipment we needed. This meant that every child who attended the camp got a goodie bag worth £30 for the price of £5! On the days of the camp, two of my friends, Sam and Will, who did GCSE computing, to help me run the sessions. I also got a local expert, called Les, to come and help on the busier Friday – Saturday session. The reason I held and organized the camp was because I never had this opportunity as a child and there has been a decline in interest in programming and computing. The camp was a huge success as we taught 25 children how to program and sparked an interest in coding. I have learned a lot from organizing this camp and I am very thankful to everyone who attended for making it possible.
Helping younger students code Raspberry Pi computers by using python and GPIO has further developed my leadership and communication skills. The part that I found the most challenging was identifying errors in the wiring as it was my first time using GPIO too. I have used Python before as I had to use it in my GCSE computing coursework, this helped me troubleshoot code more quickly. The camp was very successful as we had 25 children (with the youngest being only 6 years old!) who now know how to program.
Throughout the Pi Camp, we helped younger members of the community learn to program. I particularly enjoyed the traffic light project as it combined programming and circuitry. The best part of Pi Camp for me was the make a robot challenge, it really engaged everybody and combined programming skills and design. Overall the Pi Camp was very successful and most importantly everybody enjoyed it.
Harry, Will and Sam – Year 13