Raspberry Pi-oneers

summerschool2During the week of the 1st of August to the 5th of August, I was invited to Uppingham School by fellow teacher Arron Gourlay. We’re both teachers of the Brooke Weston Trust and both love to use technology to make our lessons more engaging. We’re both computer science teachers and enjoy teaching coding and thought that it would be great to deliver a course that got students producing something using the GPIO on the Raspberry pi.

Arron had been reading the Linux magazine and saw an article in the magazine which showed people how to make a quiz machine. The great thing about it was that it included all of the basics that students would need in order to get to grips with computer programming. It includes variables, lists, time delays, functions, loops and string manipulation. It was a great opportunity for the students to learn the basics of python and got them to see some results.


pimoroniIn order to produce this quiz, we had to make sure that we had all of the equipment we needed. We were very happy with the service from Pi-Moroni. They supplied us the equipment on time and even when we had to make some last minute orders, they supplied and delivered the equipment quickly so that we could continue extending the students. We ordered equipment such as arcade machine buttons, bread boards and jumper jerky. The breadboard allowed us to continue circuits and spread the voltage and we the cable allowed us to make more connections.

During this week, students were also given the opportunity to try some soldering and they worked together to build a pi-cade machine. A Raspberry-Pi arcade machines came together with bolts and screws and the students had to connect all of the cables up correctly and get a working machine. All of the students were a pleasure to teach and they had great team work and great engagement.

IMG_7955At the end of the week we had an exhibition for the parents. The parents were able to walk around and view the work of their children and the parents were blown away and very happy. Many of these students were in year 8 and 9. They were happy that their son or daughter would be really well prepared for future examinations.

I would like to thank Arron Gourlay for allowing me to join him and deliver this course with him and I would also like to thank Uppingham School for all of their help. Most of all, I would like to thank the parents and the pupils who were all amazing. You can see a video of the week attached below. If you would like to attempt this task yourself, I have attached the magazine scan.

Video of Raspberry-Pioneers course

If you’re interested in doing a similar project, some of the things that you will need are: –

About Raymond David James Chambers

I am the Lead teacher of computing at Brooke Weston Academy in Corby Northamptonshire. Previously I was the head of IT/Computing at Uppingham Community College. In 2015 I won the Gold National Teaching award for Innovative use of technology. I also won the 2015 Young Game Bafta - Mentor award. I'm keen to help students achieve their best and like to give them opportunities to do this. I have a passion for teaching and I enjoy meeting other people and sharing their ideas. I have a keen interest in games development as well as developing the use of ICT in classrooms across the curriculum. In my spare time I teach Irish dancing. I have been Irish dancing since I was 11. My highest position was 14th at the world championships 3 years running and 2nd at the Great Britain Championships in 2006.
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