Microbit Family session

Microbit Family session

Our library staff tell us about a recent Microbit Family session at Plymstock Library.

During the school holidays we often run Microbit family sessions where children and their parents/guardians can learn the basics of coding together. 

What is a Microbit I hear you ask? Well, it’s like a mini computer with lots of different sensors on it that you can program/code to do different things – each Microbit has an accelerometer to detect movement, a temperature gauge, a light detector and much more.

 

Microbits are borrowable from the library just like a library book so you can take one home and try one of the fantastic projects available via the Microbit website.

 

Coding is taught to children as part of the national curriculum and these sessions are a chance for parents to get involved in learning about coding too and of course have some fun!

 

During our last Microbit family session, we introduced the Microbit and talked a little bit about what it can do. We started everyone off with a fairly simple exercise of coding the Microbit to show the temperature, when shaken. It only required a couple bits of code that were put together using the Make Code website. We had printed instructions for everyone but we also used a projector to show a live version of how to put the code together.

 

Attendees uploaded the code to the Microbit via USB using our computers. We then asked everyone to check what temperature was showing on their Microbit – as we were inside a library in the warm most were showing at around 22-23 degrees. We then asked everyone to pop outside to see if the temperature changed and it did, our lowest recording was 11 degrees so not too cold!

 

Next we tried a slightly more complex program for the Microbit – this time we programmed the Microbit to play a Rock, Paper, Scissors game so it was using the accelerometer again to detect movement and then it would display a random image of either a rock, paper or scissors. Some children chose to use different images which mixed it up a bit.

 

Overall it was a fun session for both parents and children and we thoroughly enjoyed delivering the session too! From the feedback we gathered, all attendees had gained an improved knowledge of Microbits compared to before the session.

 

If you would like to borrow a Microbit, stop by your local library or reserve one online to collect later. Keep an eye on our activities and events calendar for more planned Microbit family sessions.

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