CAS South East Wales Hub Meeting January 2013

Thanks very much to Laura Roberts from Technocamps for hosting the meeting at the University of Glamorgan.

We discussed the ICT Steering Group and potential changes for the ICT curriculum in Wales.  I am on the Steering Group but obviously cannot discuss the details of the meetings and discussions we have!  The introduction of Computer Science into the whole curriculum (including primary) is considered to be key.  The key bullet point from the Written Statement is :

Computer science should be introduced at primary school and developed over the course of the curriculum so that learners can progress into a career pathway in the sector.

CPD continues to be a sticking point and we’re waiting for money to be made available for this and for the CAS Network of Excellence to be funded in Wales.  Ideas for CPD in the mean time include:

  • Python programming
  • Practical use of Raspberry Pi’s in the classroom
  • Computational Thinking
  • Sessions for primary teachers

It’s something I will look to provide for future sessions.  Technocamps can probably help with this.

We discussed ideas and applications for teaching computing at various ages.  For reference these include Scratch, Kodu, Logo, YOUSRC, App Inventor, Python, Mozilla sites Thimble and Hackasaurus, Codecademy and Code Avengers.

Laura introduced the new Technocamps competition for which they will be able to loan up to 10 Lego Mindstorm and Arduino kits per region to schools in EU convergence areas.  Sian from Dark Skies Wales demonstrated the Lego Mindstorms.  Thanks to Sian for giving up her time for this

For future meetings I hope to focus on Raspberry Pi’s.  Many schools have bought one or two but we all want to make sure we can use them effectively and not just as an alternative desktop.  I also hope to have an event after school for primary teachers to focus on Scratch.  I’ll also make sure we have some more time allocated to chat and network.

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