Are your learners ready for the Programming Olympiad?

If you haven’t already done so, please enter your IT learners with a flair for programming in the Programming Olympiad, taking place between 29 July and 2 August 2019.  It is designed to challenge learners who can use a programming language like Scratch, Python, Java, C++ or Delphi. Whilst individual learners can enter, entire classes are encouraged to take part. How does the Programming Olympiad work? In the first round of the challenge, participants have to solve a number of problems usin...

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Searching for Computational Thinking Talent

Computational thinking is a set of problem-solving methods that involve expressing problems and their solutions in ways that a computer could execute. The ability to break down a problem, recognize patterns, think in abstract ways, and create algorithms to find solutions are valuable thinking skills for computer science, information technology, mathematics and science learners. At a number of 2018 YouthSpark workshops, we challenged teachers to complete some of the Computer Olympiad Computational Think...

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Memorable professional development for KZN Subject Advisors

In October 2018, SchoolNet SA facilitators Hlengiwe Mfeka and Senzo Ngcobo completed the Intel Tablets in the Classroom for 28 GET subject advisors from Kwa-Zulu Natal at the Bergville Education Centre. These subject advisors had already attended two previous courses namely; ICT Skills for Teachers and Using Digital Resources in the Classroom. The Tablets course, which formed the final step in their professional development pathway, aimed to provide subject advisors with tools and strategies for integrat...

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South African learners compete at international coding olympiad in Japan

The International Olympiad for Informatics (IOI) is an international coding competition for high school learners that takes place in a different country every year. This year, a record 335 participants from 87 countries travelled to Japan to put their programming skills to the test. The South African team consisted of Tian Cilliers (Stellenbosch High School), Ralph McDougall (Curro Durbanville) Taariq Mowzer (Fairbairn College) and Emile Tredoux (Parklands College). They earned their spots at the 30th ...

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KZN Subject Advisors master skills for using Tablets in the Classroom

SchoolNet SA has been running a programme of professional development courses aimed at upskilling KwaZulu-Natal Subject Advisors to support teachers to make better use of digital tools as teaching and learning resources. To date, the GET subject advisors group have completed the ICT Skills for Teachers and using Digital Resources in the Classroom courses. In this blogpost we describe the first group of Subject Advisors Tablets in the Classroom course which took place in Bergville between 17 and 21 Septem...

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YouthSpark Professional Development for KZN Focus Schools

The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Education has provided 165 focus schools with technology devices for learners. Having seen how successful YouthSpark training can be to introduce teachers to basic computer science resources that can use with learners, SchoolNet SA was asked to run workshops with champion teachers selected from eighty of these schools. It was hoped that having access to some free resources aimed at youth, a portal of online training resources aimed at teachers, as well as the skills and c...

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Step up to Computer Science – Tips for teachers

Even if your school does not offer Information Technology as a subject, and even if you have no formal training in computer science, you can still introduce your learners to basic computer science concepts as part of their digital literacy lessons or perhaps as an extra-mural activity. Recently Bonolo Sedupane featured in a Microsoft Virtual Academy encouraging teachers to ‘Step up to Computer Science’. She gave a range of tips for setting up a computer science class for younger learners, ...

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Step Ahead Primary steps up their teachers’ coding skills

Step Ahead Primary School, situated in Tsomo in rural Eastern Cape, used its own funds to establish a 30-seater computer lab and WIFI zone. This ICT resource centre is made available to learners from the school as well as the education community at large who benefit from its resources. Step Ahead’s mission is to join hands with other computational thinkers in the world in promoting the use of ICTs in imparting the 21st Century Skills to learners. With this mission in mind, Elfas Mcloud, the Step Ahead ...

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Getting KwaNdengezi Teachers Coding

SchoolNet SA has been working with teachers from twelve schools in KwaNdengezi that are supported by the Rotary Club of Pinetown to make more effective use of digital resources to enhance their teaching. As part of a Microsoft Philanthropies YouthSpark project, twenty four of these teachers spent two days of their June holidays learning at Hillcrest High School in KwaZulu-Natal learning some basic computer science skills that they can share with their learners when school reopens. SchoolNet SA ...

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