Digital Schoolhouse has compiled ten activities to help parents teach computing at home as schools close due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The ‘unplugged’ activities let parents use jigsaws, play dough and more to teach the principles of computing in a playful way that children really engage with”, says partner Ukie. “Though these were initially designed for use by teachers in the classroom, they’re accessible enough to be used by families aiming to fill the coming weeks with educational activities.”
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The not-for-profit Digital Schoolhouse programme is delivered by Ukie, partnered with Nintendo UK, and supported by the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). So far, Digital Schoolhouse has reached 59,000 young people and supported more than 7,500 teachers across the country since it was founded in 2014. 55 schoolhouses have been set up in partnership with schools, colleges, and universities across the country.
Nintendo UK teamed up with not-for-profit organisation Digital Schoolhouse (DSH) last year to help deliver “play-based learning and industry best practice” to school and college learners over the next academic year, with Konami, Sega, and Ubisoft joining the initiative last year to provide a “special series of events aimed to inspire young people to pursue a career within video games and other creative industries”.
Becoming the programme’s new lead partner, Nintendo UK hopes to support an estimated 32,000 learners across a network for 55 schools and colleges “to bridge the gap between industry and education, combining fun, innovation and creativity with learning” and enable learners to learn anytime, anywhere with Nintendo’s mobile console system, Nintendo Switch. The programme – which is delivered by UK trade industry body Ukie – works in the grassroots of computing and is also working with Nintendo UK to deliver the next DSH national schools esports tournament.
A survey into the effectiveness of the Digital Schoolhouse initiative – a programme that “uses play-based learning to engage the next generation of pupils and teachers with the Computing curriculum” – recently revealed that 96 per cent of lead teachers “highly value the programme” and 98 per cent of children left workshops feeling more confident in computing.