Kids to teach MEPs coding

by Gazette Reporter

CLONDALKIN whizkids from the Coderdojo group are preparing to jet to Brussels to teach MEPs a thing or two about coding.
Six students from the group will make the journey to the European Parliament in Brussels and two of them will lead a teaching session there.
Representatives from countries across Europe will be schooled by the clever youngsters to write basic HTML code.
The session which will take place on October 14 and will give the MEPS just two hours to catch up with the pros.
Kathleen Marie Maughan, Cuolan Kenny, Tom O’Driscoll, Brad Lynch, Chloe Castley and Emily Maher, who are aged between eight and 12, will make the trip.
Kathleen and Tom will join Dojo Ninjas from around the world in the seminar with the politicians.
The Clondalkin coders will be part of a group of 50 including the coders and their mentors.
Young people from Timisoara, Bucharest, Zambrow, Rotterdam, Leiden, Bologna, Milan, Roma, Wilmslow, Shoreditch, Bray, Ashbourne, Deansrath and Athlone have all been selected to travel.
“They’re really excited, some of them might never have been on a plane before,” Aoife O’Toole, the group’s “champion”, told the Gazette.
It has been a successful 18 months for the 28 Deansrath Coderdojos, or ninjas as they are known in the coding world.
“They have taken to it like ducks to water,” O’Toole said.
“They learn how to play chess because you use the same train of thinking as you do to code – it’s very logical and mathematical.”
Volunteers from SAP mobile technology take care of the technology and help the children to acquire the skills needed to code.
Coderdojo is a global not-for-profit organisation that aims to help children gain valuable experience in the ever expanding world of tech and computer coding.
The Deansrath, Clondalkin Coderdojo club was set up in April 2013 and this is not the first time the children involved have been acknowledged for their skill.
In June of this year, co-founder of the group Bill Liao, on a trip to Dublin, said that he was touched and humbled by the work of 11-year-old Kathleen.
She has developed an anti-bullying quiz that she dreamed up so that nobody else would have to go through what she had. Coding has a wide range of uses and some of the projects the group have worked on include animations, computer games and apps.
The club is based in the Deansrath Family Centre and you can follow the team on Twitter to find out how they get on in Brussels – and to see if the Irish MEPS are up to scratch.
For children who want to join coding sessions, they take place on Tuesday and Thursday.

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