Children are growing up in a world that is changing rapidly. Technology and the internet have already disrupted multiple industries; traditional retail is under threat from online giants such as Amazon; Uber and Google Maps have transformed transport as we once knew it; and self-driving cars and trucks will be on our streets within the next decade.
With this new world comes a raft of opportunities. Programming skills and abilities in associated computing disciplines such as robotics will be vital for the jobs and careers of the future. Students who engage with computer science and tech from a young age have the chance to get a head start towards future success - they will gain a cutting-edge skill set at an early point, as well as an enhanced ability to problem solve.
This one-week course is designed to provide an interactive, enjoyable and thorough introduction to the world of coding. With a strong practical focus, students will learn how to apply the theories covered in class through individual and group projects, acquiring a range of transferable skills - including teamwork, discussion, presentation skills and problem-solving - in the process.
Scratch is a visual programming language, developed by a team at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to introduce young students to coding. Scratch makes learning to code less scary and more fun - students get to be inventive and creative, while gaining confidence and knowledge of the fundamentals of coding and computer science.
Participants on this course will discover the basics of programming through learning what goes into making a program - including variables, control blocks and procedures. In learning these concepts, students will begin to develop their 'computational thinking' skills, which will help them to understand problems, think of tech solutions, and bring those solutions to life using code. This way of thinking will help students to avoid getting stuck, giving them the tools and attributes to think their way out of a problem.
At this young age, students often suffer from "learned helplessness"; they believe that they cannot get anything right, and that they cannot progress any further. By using their own code to solve problems and make things happen, students will begin to see just how much they can achieve.
If you want to learn coding in an exciting and creative way, and create five computer programs, then this is the course for you. Whether your focus is making your interactive game characters look and sound however you like, or learning how to control a real robot - a Sphero smart toy - students will get to see just how powerful their code and their computation thinking skills are, as they bring their programs into the physical world. As an added bonus, students get to take their Sphero home with them at the end of the course.
This intensive week of computational study covers all the key questions behind relevant coding theories, such as:
Students will explore all the relevant aspects of coding with a view to building simple games and robots.
- Overview of Scratch and your computer
- Your First Scratch Program (Program 1)
- A more in-depth look at some Scratch blocks
- Introduction to 'computational thinking'
- Program 2: Fish Tank
- Sprites and animations
- Program 3 - Car Maze
- A deeper look at other Scratch blocks
- Program 4 - Quiz Master
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- Design Thinking
- Program 5 - Building a side-scrolling platform game, similar to the early Mario games
- Introduction to the Sphero
- Controlling your Sphero
- Navigating a Maze - 1
- Navigating a Maze - 2
By the end of the course, students will be familiar with the programming language Scratch, and how it used within the remit of computer science. They will have developed computational thinking and problem-solving skills, and will have created three computer programmes, including an interactive game, and a programme used to control a Sphero robotic ball, which they will be able to take home with them at the end of the course.
Students on our Junior summer school courses at St Mary's School, Ascot, will enjoy the facilities of one of the top boarding schools in the UK, with its extensive grounds and well-equipped learning spaces.
During lessons, students will be taught by experienced tutors, while outside of class they will enjoy a varied extracurricular programme in a safe environment, led by our student counsellors.
The international environment, combined with top-quality tutoring in a world-class venue, make Oxford Royale's Junior Summer School the best junior summer school in the UK.
Students will be accommodated in comfortable twin or dormitory rooms, separated by gender - please contact our registrations team if you would like more information. Accommodation is the standard accommodation for school pupils who study at St Mary's School, Ascot, so students are able to get a flavour for what being a pupil at this prestigious UK boarding school is like. Bathrooms are typically shared between students of the same gender.
The programme is overseen by the Programme Director, who implements the day-to-day running of the programme. The Director is assisted by a team of Counsellors who are there to help pupils with their daily needs and to run activities for them outside of class. The Counsellors ensure that students are looked after pastorally, culturally and socially during their programme. Students are able to talk informally and frankly to the Counsellors in order to raise concerns or to discuss their course. Residential staff live in the school throughout the programme and are able to assist students at any time of the day or night.
Students on this course:
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(If your course takes place in more than one campus in the same city and you would like to know more about which location you will be allocated, please call our registrations team)
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