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Peter O'Shaughnessy

Web developer advocate @samsunginternet

Talking to primary school children about programming

Child coding with Scratch

Last week I was invited to talk to a Year 5 class at St. Andrew’s primary school in Stockwell. The aim was to help them see some of the benefits and potential of learning to code, and to help them realise that coding goes beyond the games they’re currently making with Scratch. It struck me when planning it, that even if there’s just a small possibility that I could inspire one or two enough for it to lead to a future career as a developer, this could well be the most important talk I’ve given so far!

I’ve visited quite a few schools with my job now, plus I’ve spoken at a secondary school and attended a Careers Day at a primary school. But this was the first time I’ve been up in front of a primary school class. It was a great experience; the children were brilliant - very excited, attentive and curious. There were lots of great questions!

In case it might just help provide a starting point to anyone else who might talk about programming to a similar age group, here are the slides I used:

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1lInssGiGIUQDEd3ZqJoVsIY7Pgm7wkpLrkW7qa1Y5m0/edit?usp=sharing

I’d love to hear any feedback, whether you’re a teacher, parent or programmer. What do you think? Anything I should add, change or take out next time?

talks careers programming