The websites listed below may be useful for parents of students who are More Able and Talented in ICT / Computing. They will also be of interest to may others!
Free Downloads / Tutorials for Programming / Computational Thinking
Greenfoot Java Programming a visual environment for learning Java developed at the University of Kent
Scratch Programming & Game Making (used in year 8 scheme of work) developed by MIT Scratch is often used with primary children but can be used to develop much more complex projects particularly with the offshoot Build Your Own Blocks
Quest Text Adventure Games (used in year 7 scheme of work)
MIT App Inventor develop Apps for your Android phone. If you also download the Android app you can sync your app wirelessly to your phone. If not there is an emulator on the site. Lots of great tutorials.
Python (programming language – used in GCSE computing)
Competitions / Events etc.
Young Rewired State a superb week-long event in the summer holidays. Students get to spend 5 days at a business or university with like-minded people learning how to create an app or website using open data. It finishes with a 2 day festival of code in Birmingham.
Technocamps – a Welsh project that provides free workshops to young people on programming, robotics, game design, app development and much more. They often run free workshops at the University of Glamorgan during the holidays.
Animation 13 – UK schools animation competition run by the University of Manchester. Uses Scratch, Flash etc.
Think Quest – an international competition from Oracle which challenges students to solve real-world problems using technology.
Raspberry Pi a £22 computer running Linex designed expressly to encourage children to program. We hope to get some in school soon! They’ve been enormously popular since being launched in February 2012 and are made just down the road in Sony Pencoed. They have GPIO pins to expand computing out to electronics and robotics projects.
Arduino an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments. A kit retails for about £40.
Computing At School is a grass roots organisation that aims to promote the teaching of Computing at school. CAS is a collaborative partner with the BCS through the BCS Academy of Computing, and has formal support from other industry partners. Miss Bunce is the local Hub leader for CAS. Parents may find additional support by joining CAS.