Friday, 27 February 2015

Raspberry Pi CodeClub Week 6

Despite a week away from the Pis, nobody had forgotten how to set up their Pi and get everything connected. It is great to see the children confidently plugging/unplugging cables and getting everything up and running. By my reckoning this was the fastest set-up time so far.

All the clubbers were getting stuck in to the reaction game project. Everyone got the Scratch version working without much help from me and then was keen to try the Python alternative.

One of the speedier typists had his Python game working very quickly. We played it and after a few goes, ended up with a 'draw'. We talked about why the code was saying that both players had won and he immediately wanted to fix this. Undeterred when I wouldn't just tell him how to do it, he smugly said that he'd just use the Internet to find the answer. I think he was surprised when I said that was a great idea! We talked about Open Source software, code re-use and some of the risks or using code written by someone else if you didn't understand how it worked yourself.

We also watched Cmdr Chris Hadfield's ISS version of Space Oddity and discussed zero-gravity and weightlessness in the context of the Astro-Pi competition. I noticed that their ideas are becoming more focused. I want them to retain the creativity that has them suggesting a translation device that would help the astronauts if they encountered any aliens, and apply it within the parameters of the competition. I really keen that I don't steer them down any particular direction and let them shape the ideas. We're getting there.

I was really pleased to hear one that one of the girls had asked for - and been given - a
Raspberry Pi for her birthday. She's got a Pi2 and I we had a group discussion about the different versions and why our humble model Bs were still fine for the kind of thing we were doing.

I told the children about the Pi birthday weekend and they made me promise to try to acquire some goodies for the club while I was there. The pressure is on to deliver now!

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