Summer Holiday Bookshop Workshops

Back by popular demand, it’s the bookshop coding workshops. These taster workshops are perfect for children aged between 8 and 11. There are two workshops happening over the summer holidays: Wednesday 27th July and Wednesday 3rd August. Places on previous workshops get snapped up really quick, so book as soon as you can: https://rocketshipbookshop.co.uk/events/

Check out our page for more workshops happening over the summer holidays. [CLICK HERE]

Sega Game Design Competition

Sega recently hosted a game design competition and First Coding developed a game to enter. To demonstrate the power of Scratch and to highlight the many capabilities of the software, an arcade game was built using Scratch and submitted. The game achieved third place which is remarkable considering the Scratch creation was pitched against some pretty big hitters including experienced Unity developers. The interesting part was that this game was packaged up as an independent game, and so there were no indications that it was built using block-based programming! This is something that First Coding teaches in a our Scratch classes – how to package up and distribute the games we make.

This little game did really well with Sega awarding it third place! This just goes to show where a good idea can take you and that the reason why First Coding invests so much time in Scratch is to help pupils get from it, allowing them to bring their creations to life. Be sure to check out our new Saturday Scratch workshops starting next week here.

Never underestimate Scratch’s potential.

Fun Easter Workshops

This Easter has been very creative indeed as the holiday coding workshops come to an end ahead of the start of the school summer term. First Coding has not only been running tuition classes and Python workshops online but also there have been a series of face-to-face classes hosted in a variety of venues around Salisbury. Well done to everyone who came along and made their own arcade games, fruit machines and choose your own adventure challenges.

Whether it was online, in a bookshop or down a bunker, it was really nice to see children of all ages get creative this Easter. More importantly though, it was lovely to see parents get involved too as they learnt more about their children’s interests.

Don’t forget you can sign up to our newsletter to keep up to date of future classes. Alternatively, you can check out the First Coding Facebook page.

Blast Off

It’s always fun to explore new and interesting venues to host coding clubs. This Easter, First Coding will be running an event to introduce children to the creative world of Scratch coding. It’s being held in the Rocketship Bookshop in Salisbury on Wednesday 20th April. For more details and the book, click on this link.

Exciting News

It is so nice to start weekend coding lessons face to face once again after such a long time conducting classes virtually. Fun and interesting things are planned for this year and with offers of classrooms in the city centre, it’s great to feel so positive about what’s coming down the line. There are events planned in the most unlikely of places too: festivals, bookshops and as of today, a converted Cold War communications bunker! Check out theundergroundstudios.co.uk to see the amazing work they’re doing.

 

A Coding Venue with a Difference

There’s excitement in the air as more face-to-face events start opening up. First Coding is really pleased to provided a four lesson python coding course based around our old favourite, the Choose Your Own Adventure games. Follow the link to find out more. This has to be one of the best venues First Coding has taught in – An old Cold War communications bunker, now converted to a youth centre to help develop creative skills.

 

Summer Holiday Workshops

The summer holidays are nearly here, which can only mean that it’s the return of the First Coding holiday workshops!

All hosted via Zoom, the workshops promise to help inspire and develop young coders’ skill set through interactive and fun sessions.

Scratch Workshop

This is a summer Scratch workshop with a difference and is suitable for 10 to 14 year olds. Do you know how to program in Scratch and would like to develop your skills further? Then this is the workshop for you, learn how to create interesting elements to your games such as points systems, enemy AI and even how to add gravity to your characters to achieve more realistic gameplay.

Date: Tuesday 10th August 2021 2pm – 4pm
Cost: £20
To book: hello@firstcoding.co.uk
This workshop will be hosted online via Zoom.

Python Workshop

We will be running the popular Ciphers and Secret Messages Python workshop. Aimed at 12 to 15 years olds, this 2 hour workshop will teach you about the history of ciphers and codes whilst learning how to write your own encoder and decoder program in Python.

Date: Wednesday 11th August 2021 2pm – 4pm
Cost: £20
To book: hello@firstcoding.co.uk
This workshop will be hosted online via Zoom.

App Building Workshop

Does your teen have a great idea for an app, but doesn’t know where to start? This is an introductory workshop for people to learn how to develop apps for Android devices. In this two hour workshop you will learn just how easy it is to get creating apps for your phone or tablet? Do you have an Android phone or maybe an old Kindle Fire lying around that needs new life breathing into it? Then this is the ideal workshop. Suitable for 12-16 year olds who are confident with computers.

Date: Tuesday 17th August 2021 2pm – 4pm
Cost: £20
To book: hello@firstcoding.co.uk
This workshop will be hosted online via Zoom.

Be Successful Learning Scratch

Scratch gets a bad press with its colourful blocks and cartoon sprites, people automatically assume that it’s intended for just primary school learners, when it so isn’t. There is so much to learn and achieve through the platform. So to prove a point, First Coding entered a game built using Scratch into a game dev competition. Pitched against other game developers who were using the likes of Unity and other engines to build their creations, despite feeling like a little fish in a big pond, this little Scratch game came third overall!

Here were some of the comments the game received from other developers:

The voting period was kept open for a week after the competition had finished, giving people plenty of time to play all the games that had been entered. The final result for our entry was as follows:

App Building Competition

Children who have previously attended our Android App Building workshops may be pleased to hear that the team over at App Inventor (the platform we use to build our apps) will shortly be running their Appathon 2021 app building competition for all ages.

The theme of the competition is to design and make an app that helps someone in need or makes a difference to the community. I know from running these workshops that pupils have a great imagination and I have no doubt they could come up with some creative ideas for this contest.

If you’re interested, or know someone who might, the link to the competition is here: https://appathon.appinventor.mit.edu . Registration opens on the 1st of June with the competition running between the 18th and 31st June.

Good Luck!