The 13th CoderDojo Dazaifu, Japan!

Event Reports

February 15 (Sat), we held the 13th CoderDojo Dazaifu.
This time it was a memorable 1st anniversary, so we held a little event after the regular Dojo!

There were 12 ninjas and 3 mentors including me. And at the time of the event, ninja’s parents also helped us and we had a nice time.

Ninjas, as usual, were working on the Scratch, Viscuit, micro:bit, LEGO Mindstorm EV3, and more.

It’s a nice room where you can feel the warmth of trees, so we can relax and concentrate. The mentors who attend are very helpful and think with the ninjas together. They are good fellows who try to tell their knowledge and skills to ninjas by volunteer.

A ninja who is in the lower grades had been typing some words with the keyboard. I wondered if what she were typing, so I looked at her laptop’s screen…
“The Earth was created 46 years ago”,
“Homo sapiens will be human in the future”, etc…
She were entering some texts about the history of the Earth. And she used a Scratch extension to build a program that spoke them. There were voices like narrations that I have heard at the Science Museum. It was very interesting, right!?

Two little ninjas were showing each other Viscuit works. I was happy with their behavior. With Viscuit, the pictures drawn by ourselves move, so even small children can have fun programming. When I touched a picture of green caterpillar with my finger, it started moving was so cute!

When I touch a green caterpillar with my finger like this, it runs away 🙂

And we wanted to shorten the ninja’s presentation time, so we decided that only those who wanted to present their works would do it. This time, four ninjas have presented their works! It was a pleasure for us that they had presented their works actively!

So, I will tell you about the first anniversary event!

First, we played “Marshmallow-Challeng“. This was suggested by our mentor. Three ninjas and one mentor or parent made one team, and four teams competed. Marshmallow-Challenge is a game that creates a self-supporting tower with a marshmallow on top using 20 spaghettis, string, masking tape and a scissor.

In this game, they had to work together as a team to assemble the tower while watching the surroundings. Although it looks easy but it was a difficult task, everyone was hooked and showed their teamworks. The winning team this time was 38cm, a good result! I was sorry for the team that was too greedy and collapsed just before the end. It would have been very good result if it had keep standing! After the end, we set up a time for each team to look back. We are glad if the ninjas feel something interesting or difficult to do something with the team.

Finally, we played a quiz competition using an online service Kahoot !. Using this online service, we can create our own quiz and participate in the quiz from a browser or smartphone app. This time, I felt like this using this online service…
Using Kahoot!, children will definitely be excited
It is also effective as a tool to check the level of learning at study sessions and lectures
It is highly recommended not only for champions and mentors of CoderDojo all over the world, but also for organizers of study sessions! I will intend to use it in various scenes.
By the way, I knew about Kahoot! at a very popular event called “英語で学ぶコンピュータ・サイエンス(Let’s learn Computer Science in Enlish)” organized by Kids Code Club and others. It will be held this year, so I’m looking forward to it!

For a year, we held CoderDojo Dazaifu every month, and we could celebrate the first anniversary. I do not feel that this one year was short, because it was held by trial and error every time. There were some points to reflect on each time. However, by being involved with CoderDojo, there are many encounters, friends, and learning. These motivated me and I am able to think what to do to be better. Of course, the support of our mentors can be very helpful. They actively propose various things and advise me. I would also like to thank the nearby CoderDojos. Especially, CoderDojo Fukuoka and CoderDojo Kitakyushu have provided the opportunity for me to launch CoderDojo Dazaifu. Both are my favorite CoderDojo!
While thanking everyone for their support, it would be great if we could continue to provide a fun programming space with our friends. While teaching about programming and computers, we hope to show children the fun of learning something, the joy of knowing deeply, the satisfaction of cooperating and doing something for someone. By participating in such off-school volunteer activities, children can communicate with children in other school districts that they do not usually meet, or have conversations with nice seniors like our mentors. I’m really happy if they become triggers for children something to start or like.
Finally, I would like to thank Yasutake(やす武) and Dazaifukan. They lend us a helding place every time. Though umegaemochi sold at Yasutake is of course excellent, I also like the black beans sold in the store. If you like sweetness, please try it!

#About next time holding
Concerns about the coronavirus are spreading in Fukuoka too. We are considering holding in after mid-March as much as possible, but we also want to make a decision on holding or canceling in consideration of the health of ninjas (children) and mentors (volunteers) at CoderDojo Dazaifu. In case of cancellation, we are thinking that will try to held by online experimentally.
We will announce our decision by facebook or LINE.

I am glad if you can correct my strange English sentences.
Please tell me secretly by email or comment 😉 Thank you!!!