Ways to run your Dojo
CoderDojo volunteers and clubs all around the world have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Champions and mentors from across the globe have talked to us to share how they are running their clubs now, and we're amazed by their resilience and creativity.
Inspired by these community examples, here are some ways you can continue to provide fun, creative learning opportunities for the young people and volunteers in your Dojo.
Choose the option that works best for you, depending on your current situation and your Dojo members' needs, and feel free to adapt your club activities if your situation and local health guidance change.
It is not safe to run in-person sessions right now.
I am able to run in-person club sessions with safety measures such as social distancing.
I am able to run in-person club sessions with no safety measures.
In-person sessions during the pandemic need to run in compliance with guidance from your local health authorities and host venue. For example, this may mean using safety measures regarding hygiene, social distancing, and check-ins.
When planning in-person sessions, consider:
- Following local public health and host venue guidance
- Planning suitable safety measures eg. contract tracing
- Communicating safety measures to all Dojo members
“We started after schools went back. The kids were very enthusiastic. A lot of parents were at ease when they saw the rules because they were the same rules as when you go to a restaurant or cinema.”
You can run online sessions using video conferencing or live-streaming tools. In online sessions, young people work on a project together, or they work independently on different activities. Volunteers support them to write and debug their code during the session.
When planning online sessions, consider:
- The safety of children online
- The tools you will use
- How to communicate with parents
“Starting out, hosting online sessions was a bit challenging, but we’re very glad we did. It is definitely important to keep young people coding in a relaxed environment, especially during this time.”
Remote activities are projects and challenges that you send to young people from them to complete at home. This option is particularly suitable for your Dojo if your Dojo members have limited access to computers or to good-bandwidth internet.
When planning remote sessions, consider:
- Communicating with young people and their parents
- Choosing projects or challenges
- Showcasing finished projects
- Offering feedback and support
“We’re posting workshops and challenges, which are open-ended to allow engagement for all ages and enabling creativity and personalisation. They can participate in their own time, at their own pace.”
Adapting over time
You know your Dojo and local situation best. You can adjust how you run your club and combine different elements of online, remote, and in-person activities to suit your needs and adapt to changes in your circumstances.