Club leaders’ quick-fire guide to Coolest Projects!

Coolest Projects online is just around the corner and there’s still time for your Code Club members to go on an adventure with code and share their COOL ideas with the world! 

We want to make sure you have all the support you need to help your coders make their ideas a reality! To help, we called in our friends to share their advice, from getting started with an idea, to testing and reviewing a finished creation. 

Let’s break it down  

Members in your Code Club have developed a super COOL idea, and now they’re ready to start to bring them to life. Raspberry Pi Senior Learning Manager, Allen Heard, shares his advice to help coders break down their idea and get started! 

Test and test again 

Testing your project is a vital step in the coding process. Rohima Crook, Programme Manager for Code Club, talks through ideas to support your curious-coders to test their projects. She encourages members to collaborate with friends and family and to gather feedback on their project. 

There’s a bug in my code! 

During your coders’ testing phase, they may come across a bug! Mark Calleja, Youth Programmes Manager, is here to help your coders use their problem-solving skills to find and fix bugs in their programs.  

Code Club has a helpful debugging poster to guide coders through the different steps. If you’re based in the UK, the USA, or Ireland, head to your dashboard to download. For the rest of the world, you can access the resource via our Code Club international website

Time to review 

Stepping back and reviewing your projects is an important detail in taking part in Coolest Projects. Kevin Johnson, North America Program Coordinator, shares his helpful suggestions on the different ways you can support coders to review their project and ensure it meets their initial design brief.

Alongside these bitesize tips, the Coolest Projects team have a host of FREE resources you can use to help your club members take part in this global showcase

Join the global showcase

We’ve seen 39 countries register their COOL ideas for this year’s Coolest Projects online showcase. Young creators have until 3 May to submit their creations and if you need further support, check out the FAQs or send an email to

Young coder Kayla ‘Zooms’ around the world to meet the women of Code Club!

Meet Kayla! A young coder and our roving reporter for International Women’s Day! 

During Kayla’s half term, she ‘Zoomed’ around the world meeting the women of Code Club to learn more about the programme and the #RealRoleModels who have inspired them. 

Young coder Kayla, wearing a grey beanie hat in front of a bookcase
Young coder Kayla

From Manchester to Sydney

I loved attending Code Club, it allowed me to be logical and creative. When I moved to secondary school, I continued to volunteer to help inspire other young girls to study computing. 

I was so excited to meet with Nicola, Program Manager for Code Club Australia and learn more about the importance of women in tech. 

She said this interesting thing:

“We can’t underestimate the value of a woman teaching a girl coding — it’s so powerful. Just like I was told when I first started out in this industry, there are still girls being told that STEM is not for them. To have a woman work in tech and say “I love tech and this is why you should love tech” that’s the best —  so good!” 

Everyday #RealRoleModels 

Next, I caught up with Zoë Kinstone, Director of Clubs at the Raspberry Pi Foundation which means she is responsible for Code Clubs. I wanted to learn about her every day #RealRoleModels.

Zoë has had many different real role models, including her mum who encouraged her “to have a go and try new things” and “to learn and be curious”.  

I really liked this, as my mum is very similar. My mum volunteers at a Code Club and she inspired me and everyone else who came along to be brave, have fun, and learn to code.

Next stop India! 

My next stop was really exciting. I got to travel to India (okay, only via Zoom, but still exciting)!  

I met with Vasu, Programme Coordinator for Code Club India. I got to hear all about what it’s like to be part of a Code Club in India, which is very different from my experience in the UK. 

This was my favourite bit of our chat: 

Kayla: What is it like being involved in Code Club and how does it inspire you? 

Vasu: Code Club rekindled my love of making and creating. As a child, I wasn’t exposed to computing, but now I get to inspire other young girls, often in very rural communities, to gain access to these essential life skills.

Kayla: What access do these girls have to computers?  

Vasu: Often these girls will have never touched a digital device, but Code Club has opened the door and given them access to Raspberry Pi [computers] and other digital devices to learn how to code and make games in Scratch. 

Identical real role models 

Finally, I got to meet Caitlyn Merry, who is a Learning Manager for the Raspberry Foundation which means she gets to create all the cool Code Club projects

She also had some very inspiring role models which made me think about my #RealRoleModels, one who is my geography teacher, Miss Connolly, who I think is fair, kind, thoughtful, and positive.

 And then something unexpected happened…

Caitlyn really showed me the importance of #RealRoleModels and teachers in our lives. 

Final words from Kayla 

I loved ‘Zooming’ around the world meeting the fantastic women at Code Club. The stories they shared were very different from my experiences, but it showed me that real role models have similar qualities, wherever you are in the world.

Real role models exist everywhere. They can be family, friends, educators, work colleagues, young people, or even people you only know through social media. I’m now even more determined to be one of the #RealRoleModels too. 

I’d love to know who the #RealRoleModels are in your life. Share with me on Twitter at Code Club UK or Code Club World

Grandparents know best! Learn what inspired Bhakti’s Coolest Projects idea.

Coolest Projects ignites curiosity and creativity amongst young coders from across the globe. 

In 2020, coding superstar Bhakti (13) from Pune, India, entered Coolest Projects. She shares with us her first-hand experience of creating her Scratch game ‘Save Animals’.

Gaining real-life skills

Bhakti (13), lives in Pune, India and regularly attends her school’s Code Club supported by the Pi Jam Foundation. Bhakti is new to coding and when she learned about Coolest Projects from her teacher, she saw it as an exciting opportunity to develop her coding skills. 

I never knew that we could do so much with computers apart from emails and playing games. I never knew that I could make my own game.

That was very powerful for me. I found programming to be so much fun and that I was gaining a real-life skill, which will help me and my family in the future.”

Grandparents inspire an idea!  

Bhakti’s grandparents regularly told her stories of the local area around Pune being densely populated with trees and animals, with the community growing and selling their own vegetables. 

During her lifetime, this was something that Bhakti had never experienced. She had witnessed the impact of hunting and how the consequences of this practice had changed the area and the animals that live there. 

The increase in hunting in her region was the inspiration for Bhakti’s 2020 Coolest Projects entry. She wanted to raise awareness of hunting and created a Scratch game called ‘Save Animals’, where players can protect animals by stopping hunters.   

Screenshot of Bhakti's Scratch project.
Blue sky, green hedges and a hunter firing a gun into the sky.

Designing a game on a mobile device

‘Save Animals’ was fully designed and coded on Bhakti’s father’s mobile. This presented several challenges, from access, to time on the phone, and not having enough ‘hunter’ themed sprites in Scratch! 

Bhakti nearly gave up, but her grandma encouraged her to continue and even helped with her idea creation. 

A GIF of a forest setting with wild animals moving across the page and hunters shooting at them.

Bhakti’s three tips on taking part in Coolest Projects

  1. Don’t overthink — plan and execute! 
  1. Share your ideas with your teacher or parent, they can help you find ways to solve the problems you encounter. 
  1. Participation is more important than asking yourself “whether I can do this or not?”.  

Proud to be part of a global showcase

Bhakti was proud to be part of Coolest Projects, along with other young creators around the globe.  

“I never imagined that I could be part of a global challenge. My school teachers were very proud of me, it did take some time to explain to my parents the importance of challenges like these, which gives global exposure to kids my age.

I am glad I convinced my dad to share his phone with me!”

Bhakti loved being involved with Coolest Projects, so much that she’s participating again this year, to develop her coding skills even further.

Good luck to Bhakti and to all other young creators working on their Coolest Projects ideas!

Join Bhakti in Coolest Projects 2021! 

Idea registration is now open for Coolest Projects! Wherever you are in the world, invite your Code Club members to get creative and take part in this global technology showcase. We can’t wait to see the amazing things they create.