Three tips for planning your next CoderDojo session
While many Dojos have been on hold for the past few months, some clubs are now planning to resume their sessions — either in person, online, or by sending activities for their Ninjas to try at home. You can read about the three main options for resuming your sessions here. We want to make that journey as seamless as possible. We hope that you will find the following tips helpful!
Promote your Dojo
Many Dojos use social media to promote their club and to showcase the activities that they are doing at their sessions. We have designed an exciting range of new CoderDojo images to help you promote and share about your next Dojo, whether you are running in-person or online sessions, or sending remote activities. The images include characters wearing face coverings, characters participating in Zoom sessions, characters coding at home, and more! You can download the resources for free at dojo.soy/promo-images-2020.
Plan your structure
Regardless of how you plan to host your club, it is important to design the structure of your sessions in advance. For Dojos starting online sessions for the first time, you will need to consider preparing materials ahead of time, safeguarding, and choosing the right tools. You can find tips on running your sessions online in this short video, and you can find more detailed guidance here. If you are planning to send out activities or set remote challenges for your Ninjas, then map the timeline and implementation of this with your volunteers.
If you are able to run your sessions in person, then there will be social distancing and safety protocols to take into account. Always adhere to the safety guidelines in your local region. Many Dojos who have been able to run in-person sessions have found new and innovative ways to learn and create with code. For example, Martijn in the Netherlands has been ‘beaming’ the Ninjas’ code onto a big screen to facilitate social distancing, while Katz in Japan has been running ‘blended’ sessions.
You can find further information, guidance, and resources on our new webpage.
Stay in touch!
It is important that you keep in touch with your volunteers and parents/guardians of Dojo participants. If you will be running your sessions online, then ensure that you send them the link to each session and any instructions needed to join in advance. It can also be useful to share what activities you are planning for your session, including links to any online projects or PDF files Ninjas may need. Communications outside of Dojo sessions should always be directed to parents/guardians and not to young people.
If you are able to run your sessions in person, then you will need to make arrangements with your venue to ensure that the space is safe. Ensure that you communicate all safety protocols to volunteers and parents/guardians of Dojo participants in advance. The CoderDojo ticketing system is a useful tool for keeping track of who has attended your sessions. Make sure to set up your event in good time and ensure that all Ninjas who plan to attend have booked a ticket.
Lastly, make sure to stay in touch with us at the CoderDojo Foundation! You can join our regular community calls to hear the latest guidance and examples from the community, and connect with other community members on our CoderDojo Global Slack. We also regularly share resources and updates on our Twitter and Facebook pages.