Free Workshop for Secondary Teachers: Introduction to BBC micro:bit

Interested in getting hands experiences on with the BBC micro:bit, due to land in the hands of every Year 8 student in the summer term? Now’s your chance!

Farset Labs will be running a free, hands on “Getting started with the BBC micro:bit” Computing at Schools Northern Ireland Hub workshop on the 10th March 2016 from 6:30pm-9:00pm at Farset Labs.
We will hope to cover
– What is the micro:bit?
– Getting started and making your first programs
– Brief overview of the different programming environments available
– More in depth look at Python on the micro:bit
– Ideas for use in the classroom

We will have a few computers available at Farset, but if possible, please bring your own laptop.

If you have any queries or questions, feel free to drop myself (Andrew Mulholland, Outreach Manager @ Farset Labs) an email at

This event is supported by the Python Software Foundation, Farset Labs and Computing at Schools NI.


Do I need to have any previous programming experience?
Nope! We are targeting the workshop at those will little or no programming experience.

I am not a secondary school level teacher (am a primary school teacher, higher education academic or from industry), can I come down and take part?
Unfortunately we expect high demand for this workshop so have to prioritise secondary teachers for now. If we still have space closer to the workshop, we would still love to see you there though. Put your name down for the waiting list for the “Other” ticket type and we will be in contact closer to the date.

If there is sufficient demand, we well look into launching follow-on events for a wider audience.

Do I need to provide my own BBC micro:bit?
Nope! We have been kindly been provided a set by the Python Software Foundation.

Is there anything then I need to bring?
If you have a laptop running Windows, Mac OS or Linux, then it would be great if you could bring it. Although we have some computers available, it is better to learn and practice on familiar equipment.

Is there free parking available nearby?
Yip! Weavers Court Business estate (which Farset Labs is located within) has ample onsite free parking.

Eventbrite - Introduction to BBC micro:bit

Northern Ireland Raspberry Jam 5 (EU Code week)

On Saturday 11th October, 15 kids and their parents turned up at Farset Labs for the 5th Northern Ireland Raspberry Jam as part of EU Code week.


The kids worked through a number of challenges, the main being building their own reaction timer game using ScratchGPIO, a breadboard and a number of components.2



We also had a film crew in filming the Raspberry Jam from Fuzzy Duck (filming for TalkTalk) after Andrew won the Next Generation Digital Hero award. They were making a film of what he does which included the Raspberry Jam. The short film should be out in a few weeks.


In between creating awesome reaction timer games, playing with RGB LEDs and hacking Minecraft, the kids also found time to make use of the event space blackboard.


The Northern Ireland Raspberry Jams are now going to be running monthly! They will run on the second Saturday of every month.

The other 2 Raspberry Jams for this year are

More details of what we will be up to at these Jams will be announced in due course.


Special thanks to Andy McMullen and Katie’s dad for the photographs, Queen’s University School of Electronics, Electronic Engineering and Computer Science for the lend of some Raspberry Pis, Victoria College for the excellent writeup and Fuzzy Duck productions for coming over to do some filming.

Northern Ireland Raspberry Jam feedback

You do not need to have a Raspberry Pi to come to a meeting. In fact, not having a Raspberry Pi is an excellent motive for coming along.
You do not need to have a Raspberry Pi to come to a meeting. In fact, not having a Raspberry Pi is an excellent motive for coming along.

We have some great news on the Raspberry Jam front in Northern Ireland! We’re planning to make our Raspberry Jams at Farset Labs a lot more frequent (instead of the current roughly every 6 months). We are looking into once a month or bimonthly.

Before we start though doing more frequent Raspberry Jams we want to grab some feedback from you, even if you have never attended a Raspberry Jam before.

Previous events have covered:

We want to figure out what you want to learn, what type of things you would like to see at a Raspberry Jam (Talks, Q&As, hands on workshops etc).

So please take a few minutes to go through our really quick anonymous survey, you have the chance to give your opinion on what we do at the Northern Ireland Raspberry Jams for the next few months!

We hope to announce the date of the first in the new series of Raspberry Jams within the next few days so keep an eye on the Farset labs blog and social media.

Raspberry Jam is back!

Date – 16th November
Time – 1pm to 5pm
Raspberry Jam is a rapidly growing global network of user groups that meet regularly to support hobbyists, developers, teachers, students, children and families – in fact, anybody that would like to put their Raspberry Pi to good use. While Raspberry Jam is not endorsed, sponsored or associated with Raspberry Pi or Raspberry Pi products or services, some of our regular members are volunteers for the Raspberry Pi Foundation. At our meetings we have helpful people who can help you with everything you need to get what you want from your Raspberry Pi.

Raspberry Jam is a Farset Labs Members event, so visitors will be expected to make a small donation either in the form of an online ticket, or chucking a few coins in the tin in person.

You do not need to have a Raspberry Pi to come to a meeting. In fact, not having a Raspberry Pi is an excellent motive for coming along. You will discover what you can do with a Raspberry Pi when you do manage to get hold of one. We may even have a few spare you can use on the day.
Stuff we’ll be trying out:
  • A ‘beginners guide’ walk through of how to get started with your Pi
  • Getting started with Hardware interfaces to the Raspberry Pi with flashy lights and ScratchGPIO
  • Some show-and-tell demonstrations of cool projects people have already done with their Pi’s
  • Breaking to a relaxed evening of Pi-Jamming, where everyone is encouraged to share their experiences.
Children are very welcome to attend the event, when accompanied by a parent or guardian.
We will try to get our hands on as many HDMI compatible monitors as we can, but please try and BYO monitor. We have plenty of mice and keyboards, but few HDMI compatible monitors.
If you have an awesome pi project you have been working on, we would love you to bring it along and show it off in the show and tell.