The Hour of Code movement aims to expose as many people as possible to basic computer programming through completing a series of simple activities that introduce basic computer science concepts. At the end of 2016, Microsoft commissioned SchoolNet SA to facilitate a series of workshops to get as many learners as possible coding using the materials available at code.org/minecraft.
Between 1 – 9 December 2016, 41 face to face workshops and 4 virtual workshops were held and a total of 1 874 learners and 106 teachers did an Hour of Code. We were thrilled with these numbers, especially as in South Africa most schools close early in December. Training took place at Microsoft Schools, schools where our Microsoft Innovative Educator Experts teach, ICT resource centres and venues where SchoolNet SA facilitators organised sessions. One of the most memorable sessions took place at Blairgowrie Primary School where Microsoft Managing Director Zoaib Hussain joined in this session and “learnt to code” along with the group.
To try to encourage as many teachers as possible to get involved, we held a Microsoft Virtual Academy webinar entitled “Get your Students doing an Hour of Code”. In this live session Microsoft Teacher Ambassador Bonolo Sedupane and Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert Hawa Patel talked about how they have used coding with their learners.
If you would still like your learners to give the Hour of Code a try it is not too late. Whilst internationally many schools participate in the Hour of Code in the first week of December, the materials are available and free to use all year long. Find out how you can get involved by checking out these posts on the SchoolNet SA blog. To find out more about the SchoolNet SA Hour of Code sessions organized on behalf of Microsoft read the full report here http://bit.ly/2jKo0Ws