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 andrew.mulholland@farsetlabs.org.uk

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

FAQ

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

Get Kids Coding, Designing and Building This Summer 2014 with Our Special Four-Week CoderDojo Course

 

Summer can be either be downtime or uptime for kids, families and businesspeople alike. For our members who volunteer to run CoderDojo at Farset Labs it could have been a good time to chill out. But noooooo, they’ve only gone and made more work for themselves.

This July and August, bring your kids to Farset Labs to learn their choice of the following, in four weeks:

  1. Build and program a LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 robot. The robot was part of the kit kindly donated to Farset by the Nerve Centre for just this kind of hands-on learning. Well, it’s not just about the learning, right? It’s the errr…. Robots! UPDATE: LEGO sessions were booked-out in a couple of hours! Sorry. Hannah is taking names for more LEGO sessions in September, just email dojo@farsetlabs.org.uk
  2. Design a working computer game with GameMaker.
  3. Design and build a website.

Normal CoderDojo will resume in September. See the calendar for details.

Aaaand, while we have your attention, it’s worth reminding everyone that Farset has no public funding and is run by volunteers. No, wait, not quite volunteers: in fact all of us pay to be members in the first place. So if you or your contacts are interested in sponsoring great causes like our CoderDojo events, or getting behind Farset in its mission to develop everyone’s creative and technical skills, get in touch. And you don’t have to be a deep-pocketed company, Farset’s lifeblood is our recurring monthly member payments, and we are always keen for small personal donations from visitors to the Labs. ‘Nuff said about filthy lucre, now let’s get back to the… errr… ROBOTS!

Register for the CoderDojo Summer Course here.

P.S: No nasty remarks about my design skills on the flyer. I stayed up to the wee hours putting that abomination together. It’s MY abomination and I’m proud of it.

Raspberry Jam Round-up

For any visionary, dreamer or hapless idiot trying to drive societal change, there can be few things more vindicating than the sight of school-age kids teaching adults how to do things. I wandered into our Raspberry Jam event on Saturday and felt the status bar on my Hope Drive stretch out a little, maybe from orange into green. Raspberry Jams are open to anyone and this time we had people from zero years-old (yes, actually) up to, well, I wouldn’t like to say but put it this way: they’d remember Belfast before The Troubles.

This time the regular Farset crowd got a big boost by having the running of the event taken off our hands by the irrepressible AndrewMulholland, who finds time amidst schoolwork to make and teach technology (we hear his latest project  with his school robotics club is a cardboard quadcopter; turns out the sky isn’t the limit!). Andrew is one of a line of Dalriada acolytes to find their way to Farset somehow, setting a high bar for the involvement of NI’s schools in the maker revolution.

Continue reading Raspberry Jam Round-up

DIY Guitar Pedal Workshop

Creativity Month is supported by DCAL and operated by the Nerve Centre
Creativity Month is supported by DCAL and operated by the Nerve Centre

As part of Creativity Month, we have invited the _maker collective up from Dublin to walk attendees through how to build a fuzz distortion pedal from start to finish on Saturday the 30th of March. The workshops are aimed at beginners to D.I.Y. electronics and we cover all the essential skills that you will allow you to create your own electronic instruments and effects for you to take home and love!

These classes are normally priced at £60 for normal tickets and £50 for concessions (seniors, students), however, thanks to support from the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure under their Creativity Month programme, we’re able to subsidise this down to £45 / £35 per person, the concession price includes Farset Labs members, and refreshments will be provided at the event.

Guitarists are encouraged to bring their instruments and a small amp if they have them to play / test with.

Please sign up early as we need to confirm numbers by Saturday the 23rd!

You will be invoiced after signing up via email and payment must be made in advance or you may lose your booking

UPDATE: Due to slow uptake we’re extending the booking deadline. The course WILL be going ahead regardless of additional attendance, and late attendance is not guaranteed.

Eventbrite - Creativity Month:DIY Guitar Pedal Workshop