Computing update: Royal Society report, CPD, competitions, resources and CASS meeting on Sunday
CASScotland
Kate Farrell
January 26, 2012
3

Hello everyone,

Exciting times at the moment! 2012 is Code Year and there is so much happening!

Shut Down or Restart:
The Royal Society recently produced its report on Computing in Schools. This is an interesting document, worth a read. It doesn’t just look at the state of Computing in England but also the rest of the UK. You may like the following recommendation:

“Education Scotland should ensure that the declared entitlement of all learners to third-level outcomes in Computing Science is implemented in all schools for all learners using appropriately qualified teachers.”

The full document is available at http://royalsociety.org/education/policy/computing-in-schools/report/?f=1 (including Kindle and e-reader versions so you’ve no excuse for making this your bedtime reading this week 😉

The report has spurred the decision by the DfE that ICT no longer has to be taught in England and will be replaced by Computing Science from September!

Some CPD opportunities:
The Oracle Academy 2012 will be held in Edinburgh from Monday 23rd July – Friday 27th July 2012. For more details see http://www.compednet.com/2012/01/the-oracle-academy-institute/

There is also a course on the delivery and assessment of the NPA Computer Games Development. The course begins online on Tuesday 14 February 2012 and a face-to-face event on Tuesday 28 February 2012 in Stirling. More information here: http://www.compednet.com/2012/01/scotlands-collegessqa-academy-npa-computer-games-development/

Joy of Code – learn how to program in Greenfoot through step-by-step youtube video tutorials: http://blogs.kent.ac.uk/mik/category/joy-of-code/

Computing at School Scotland:
Join the Scottish computing teachers association for FREE!! Please encourage all your colleagues to sign up here: http://bit.ly/joincasscotland

The benefits:
* Find out about Computing news first!
* Useful and inspiring CPD courses
* Get access to exciting resources your colleagues have developed
* Just by signing up for free you can help CASS become bigger and stronger!

There is also a CAS Scotland meeting THIS SUNDAY. We will be discussing new curricular developments, CPD, Higher Education support and transistion, and this year’s annual conference. Please come along and make your voice heard 🙂
Sunday 2pm at the Edinburgh University Informatics building. Directions here: http://www.ed.ac.uk/schools-departments/informatics/about/location

Interesting Resources:
* Sign up to Code Year! codeyear.com
* Code Year uses www.codecademy.com to teach javascript online in bite-sized lessons with badges you gain along the way!
* For those of you using Scratch in class this site might be interesting: www.scratch.ie/resources
* NZ computing teachers’ association have a great list of Programming online resources. No signup necessary http://nzacditt.org.nz/project/programming-and-cs

Competitions:
* The Google Science Fair is an online science competition seeking curious minds to carry out science projects (which includes computing and related projects). Anybody and everybody between 13 and 18 can enter. All you need is an idea. http://www.google.com/events/sciencefair/ Deadline: 1 April 2012 with registration required in advance.
* Computer Animation competition: http://animation12.cs.manchester.ac.uk
* Code Breaker programming competiton: http://animation12.cs.manchester.ac.uk/index.php/competition-main/allcomps/codebreaker
* Alan Turing Cryptography competition: www.maths.manchester.ac.uk/cryptography_competition_2012/chapter1.php
* Water Works is a new year-long photography competition for Scottish schools that aims to get pupils thinking about water in Scotland and how vital it is: http://www.hutton.ac.uk/news/photographs-show-how-water-works

I hope something in this post catches your eye and your imagination and hopefully I’ll see a few of you at the CASS meeting on Sunday

Kind regards,

Kate

Kate Farrell
Chair of Computing at School Scotland

3 Responses
  1. As a little extra, if you’re thinking of doing the Codebreaker competition, there’s a suite of excellent resources available to support this competition that CAS are running in association with Animation12.

    The purpose of these resources is to support teachers in running a number of session to help pupils to develop their Java abilities using the Greenfoot environment (for information on how to install Greenfoot please visit their website). These resources are intended for use as part of an after school club although they can be adapted as required. Resources for 10 hour long sessions are provided and they cover making three different games/scenarios using Greenfoot. These scenarios are as follows.

    1. Ship Game – player navigates a ship around the screen to collect crates while avoiding submarines that will stop them.
    2. Air Raid Game – player controls a rocket launcher that moves along the bottom of the screen. Rockets are launched to destroy crates dropped to destroy planes flying across the top of the screen.
    3. Cannon Game – player controls a cannon that must shoot over a wall to hit a target on the other side of the screen.

    Go to: http://www.computingatschool.org.uk/index.php?id=cb-programming-club to download

    They have been put together by Brian Cullen (thanks Brian!) from Rossett School, Harrogate

  2. julie said on 23/02/2012

    Two of our pupils at Madras College won first prize in the Manchester Universtiy Animation competition last year (2011). They are working on a new animation for this year. To view their animation and information about their day
    http://www.madras.fife.sch.uk/news_events/animation11_award.html

  3. Dear Kate
    thank you for all these excellent resources. What year groups do you think Greenfoot is suitable for? We have just finished Scratch with the S2’s and I am wondering which language to use for the National 4’s – have had a quick look at Python? Any suggestions?
    thanks very much

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