Students! We need you!

Are you a student keen to share your skills and spare time to help inspire the next generation? Then we want you to become a volunteer for Code Club!

Code Clubs are weekly coding sessions for children aged 9-11, which take place in schools, community centres and libraries across the UK (and in countries around the world!).

Whether you already have computer programming knowledge, or you’re keen to learn coding for yourself, volunteering with us is a great way to expand your skillset – and have fun doing it!

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Student volunteers who have already got started running clubs have this to say:

“I really enjoy being part of Code Club because I get the opportunity to share my knowledge with others. I didn’t know any HTML before I started running my club, so I actually got to teach myself something useful as well! As a busy student, volunteering with a club gives you the chance to leave work aside for a moment, and work on your communication skills, patience and social engagement.”
– Abbas Tutcuoglu, Imperial University. Read more from Abbas here.

“As a Computer Science student, running a Code Club has been a great opportunity to inspire kids and see how great coding truly is.”
– Shalom Ayidu

“As someone who particularly enjoys coding, I relished the opportunity to get students involved and interested in coding and Code Club presented the perfect way to do this.”
– Zak Batinica, NUCATS

Increasingly, employers are looking for graduates who can help plug a growing digital skills gap – in 2013, a report by O2 revealed that Britain will need 750,000 skilled digital workers by 2017. Volunteering for Code Club, developing your knowledge of coding and computational thinking, can therefore offer a massive boost to your CV.

Employers are also keen to see how students have spent their spare time whilst at university, and volunteering is a really great way to show that you are engaged in giving back to the local community, and  show passion and dedication.

Sean Price, Managing Director of iBox-Security Ltd, is just one of those employers who sees the benefits that volunteering and running a Code Club can bring:

“Being both a business owner and Code Club volunteer running a weekend club in Derby, it’s a great way to give back and help develop the next generation of computer enthusiasts. Volunteering is great for the community at large and it also looks great on your CV. Being able to spend an hour a week with young children who are passionate about computers is a fantastic thing and showing them new skills to develop their future is an absolute pleasure each week.”

So… think you could be a volunteer with Code Club this semester? Visit the Code Club website or check out our volunteer job role to see what’s involved in running a Code Club.

It’s National Coding Week!

Today is the start of National Coding Week 2015 – encouraging adults to learn more about digital industries, to get opportunities to try out coding, and to help raise awareness of the digital skills gap in the UK.

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A recent survey conducted by National Coding Week revealed that 52% of adults in the UK said they would feel ‘extremely or very daunted’ at the prospect of learning to code, while 41.3% believed that the older they are, the harder it is to pick up a skill like coding.

Richard Rolfe, co-founder of National Coding Week, said: “The key aims of National Coding Week are to encourage adults of any age to learn an element of computer coding, to encourage digital experts to share their skills, and to collaborate, share, learn and have fun! If I can learn to code at age 51 then anyone can!”

We couldn’t agree more! And we’re really pleased that as a new school year begins, we’re seeing lots of new Code Clubs being set up, many by intrepid volunteers who wonderbotdon’t have existing coding or tech industry experience.

We believe that one of the best ways to learn is by developing and sharing your knowledge with others, so we really hope to see this trend growing. Whether you’re a parent, a teacher, a student, or someone who wants to learn new skills and gain new experiences – we’d love to see you register on our site and get stuck in starting up a Code Club near you.

We provide everything our volunteers need to get started – including resources to structure each Code Club session, an amazing community of existing volunteers to offer support, as well as Code Club’s own dedicated members of staff based around the country.

Find a National Coding Week event near you or check out some of the Code Club training and meetup events we have planned in the coming weeks.

Code Club and Strictly Come Dancing present… Robo-Dancers!

We’re very excited to see the launch of the BBC’s new mixital site – part of their Make It Digital Initiative. It’s an amazing new online platform full of great resources, which make digital creating simple and fun. The site offers users the chance to publish and share the things they create, as well as commenting on, rating and re-mixing the creations of others.

As part of the mixital platform, we’ve joined forces with the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing team to create an awesome new version of our Robo Boogie game – “Robo-Dancers”- and this version has a whole new look for you to try out!

You can choose the robot you want, and select the music they dance to:

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You can then change the value of variables to alter how the robot dances.

There’s also a ’Code Mode’, in which you can edit the code itself, changing the variable values to alter the robot’s dance:

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Once you’ve finished making your dancing bot, you can choose to save it, or publish it on the mixital website for others to check out!

Want to give it a go for yourself? Head over to the mixital site now!