For those of you that missed it, VooDoo protégé & my daughter Lexi Schoene (aged 7) scooped up the prize for design at last Sundays Coder Dojo coolest project awards in the RDS. Awards were presented in 13 categories including design, Web and platform video games, apps for mobile, and hardware.
An attendee of the Coder Dojo class at IADT, Lexi won an Apple iPad mini for a project that she created using a child friendly coding program called scratch. Not one to over egg the pudding, Lexi kept her design user friendly and chose the projects name based on her non-jargon approach to tech.
The project was titled “Lexi Loves Scratch”, even though I suggested she choose a title with a little bit more flair!?6 judges marked her project over 2 rounds of what appeared to be very friendly Q & A sessions.
Here is Lexi describing each stage of her project, each line of code she used and why to the judges!
Shortly after the judging took place, Lexi was informed that she had been short listed for an award. The intercom called for all candidates to make their way to Hall 3 without their parents/guardians! I was assured that it was a capacity issue and that I could view the awards ceremony from the main atrium of the RDS.
I waited anxiously for the big box in the sky to determine Lexi’s fate. I had versed her well with the age old solace “remember it’s not the winning, it’s the taking part that counts” and had promised her a trip to Scrumdiddlies no matter the outcome.
The screen came on and the noise died down. Lexi’s category was the first to be announced, the competition was intense.
To my surprise and delight the presenter read out Lexi’s name!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
A while later Lexi emerged from the awards ceremony bouncing up and down in delight at her win! After a big squeeze and few embarrassing mom kisses she was whisked off for interviews with various press. I stood in the background and held her coat.
Scrumdiddlies was closed by the time we got home, so Lexi requested a trip to our local Chinese to celebrate. Our policy of “no real time coding at the table” still applied. #worstmomever
Now in its fourth year, the Coolest Projects Awards is a showcase of the global CoderDojo movement, the community-based, free computer coding classes booted-up by James Whelton in 2011. This year’s awards featured over 500 entries from across the European Coder Dojo network.
We were so proud to be a part of was a truly amazing day this year, and look forward to the next Coolest Projects Awards next year.
“The projects that the kids and young people have developed are really impressive, not just in their use of technology but also through the wide array of topics, challenges and subjects that they are covering,” said Mary Moloney, CoderDojo Global CEO. “Whether they’re developing games using Scratch or sophisticated enterprise solutions using advanced coding languages like C++ and Swift, they each have challenged themselves and have achieved great results. It’s great to see the kids and young people exploring and working with new technologies too, like robotics, drones and virtual reality. These kids are not just the inventors of the future; they are change makers and explorers right now.”
Noel King, founding member of Coolest Projects added: “Extending the awards this year to being a European-wide event is very exciting and this will add an extra dimension to the creativity and excitement we witness on the day. Seeing young people from different countries come together to share their visions and experience is very cool and I am sure this experience will spark more creativity and ideas for members projects next year.”
Credit Reporting Information: Tech Central Reporters
The 2015 CoderDojo Coolest Project Awards winners:
Special prize winners
Enterprise Conor Begley (Dundalk), Quickcon
Design Lexi Schoene (Dun Laoghaire), Lexi Loves Scratch
Use of Microsoft technologies Rudhari Madden, Luke Madden (Athenry), Minecraft Mods: Money, Clothes and Weapons
International Sigfried Seldeslachts (Leuven), DIY Drone
Team Rory McCleary, James McKenna & Lui Sheils (Monaghan), Freaky Friday
Social Impact David Brett (Cork CIT Blackrock Castle Observatory), Marlin Brando Oceanic Avenger
Overall prize winners
Scratch 1 Thomas Brandes (Kinsale), Computer Simulator
Scratch 2 Tana and Ells Truyts (Antwerpen-Centrum), Save our Seas
Website John David White (Dungarvan), Book Reviews by Kids4Kids
Games & web games Aidan Dowling (St. Marys College, Rathmines), Space Explorer
Mobile John Ryan (Thurles), Arrive Alive
Hardware Maciej Goszcydci (Dublin City University), Blue Tie Minicomputer
Evolution Harvey Brezina Conniffe (Dublin City University), Family Minder