Students get their hands on a Raspberry Pi

itemid-55123-getasset.jpgA Raspberry Pi has been donated to Swallow Hill Community College in Leeds by element14.

The distributor also held a masterclass with pupils and teachers to highlight the device’s potential as a teaching aid.

Raspberry Pi is an ARM processor-based embedded computer system designed to inspire a new generation of teenage computer programmers, by a team of Cambridge entrepreneurs and academics frustrated by the lack of computer science talent emerging from schools.

“The Raspberry Pi is the ideal teaching aid to inspire a new generation of engineers and computer experts,” said Mike Powell, technical development manager at element14.

“Rather than simply providing the equipment we can provide an invaluable online resource for anyone to discuss, share and develop ideas involving the Raspberry Pi” added Powell.

In the teaching session children aged between 11 and 12 worked in groups to create a number of web pages, using the Raspberry Pi as mini web server.

“The master class was an opportunity for students to get an insight into the opportunities available with modern ICT. We hope that days like this and the continued use of the Raspberry Pi will inspire the pupils to consider careers in the field and give them an advantage where computer skills are more essential than ever,” said Bryan Pearce, assistant principal at Swallow Hill Community College.

The initiative is part of a wider programme with element14 partnering with social enterprise, Leeds Ahead in a programme called ‘Make the Grade’.

“This will not only benefit the children, but also local communities as the children develop new skills which can be reinvested in the future,” added Sophie Nesworthy, project coordinator at Leeds Ahead.

Leeds Ahead works with the public and private sectors to foster social and economic regeneration in the city. 

The teaching of ICT in UK schools has been a hot topic for many months with Ofsted, Schools Minister Nick Gibb, Secretary of State for Education Michael Gove and most recently Google’s chief executive, Eric Schmidt, all of whom desire to enhance current teaching practices.

Raspberry Pi has 100,000 confirmed orders

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