#AfricaCodeWeek Announces New ACW App, Teacher Trainings and AfriCANCode Challenge 2020

Virtual Africa Code Week 2020

The 5th edition of Africa Code Week (ACW) in Uganda is going to be conducted online  this year, and preparations are in high gear! Over the last four years ACW has grown from strength to strength, firstly in Kampala in 2016 and right across the country in places like Jinja, Mbale, Tororo, Mbarara, Shema, Yumbe, Karamoja . It has been an amazing journey for the Africa Code Week team in Uganda with over 10,000+ students and 1000+ trainers  trained to code all over the country to date. ACW in Uganda has empowered young people with coding tools and skills that we will see an increase of awareness in coding and computer engineering as excellent, varied and interesting career options and these young people can become key actors of Uganda’s future economic development.

Because of the outbreak of coronavirus, the 2020 ACW efforts are shifting to a virtual model allowing the expansion of the program’s reach to 54 African countries with all learning materials translated into Portuguese, French for the large Francophone and Lusophone African communities.

This year, we the ICT Teachers Association of Uganda (ITAU), and Edify Uganda have come on board to support the ACW program reach more teachers and students all over the country. Our role will be to

  1. Provide a platform for training primary and secondary ICT teachers during the Africa Code Week train trainer sessions in September. NB: Interested teachers can register through THIS FORM in advance.
  • Sharing ACW training materials  for teachers and parents on the ITAU online platforms
  • Support contacting of ICT teachers or any teachers interested in coding to attend the online training sessions hosted by the ACW team
  • Assist in bringing awareness of the benefits of coding  to their network of schools and teachers.
2020 Africa Code Week Timeline. 2019 Results were announced here.

2. Support the coordination for teachers to host coding sessions during the Africa Code Week student training sessions in October.

  • For teachers who are trained in September to host coding sessions with their students
  • Support in monitoring the total number of students trained by the teachers in order to know the overall number of students that participated
  • Help ensure continuity of coding activities after ACW activities.
READ MORE: ITAU to Partner with Africa Code Week in Promoting Digital Skills Training (ITAU - 27/07/2020)

The New Africa Code Week App

In addition, a new ACW mobile app is being introduced to provide easy access to smartphone material in support of all-inclusive learning. The App has several lesson plans and notes on digital skills for teachers and young people in 4 languages

Africa Code Week App is available on Google Play Store, and is officially Going live on 1st Sept 2020

The AfriCANCode Challenge

Another development for this year is the AfriCANCode Challenge which is a coding competition aimed at engaging participants through a number of fun and exciting activities. The competition invites youth from the age of 9 to 16 either individually or in teams, to use their skills and creativity to solve problems.

AfriCANCode Challenge at a Glance

Two competition themes have been identified: ‘Courageous Coders’, focused on how technology can change the world, and ‘Plugged-in Pupils’, which asks the youngsters to imagine the potential related to tomorrow’s connected school. The rules of the competition are outlined below:

Participants

  • You can compete either individually or in teams (5 per team max.)
  • You must be between 8 and 16 years old
  • You must be residing or attending school in the country you compete in
  • If competing in a team: at least 1 female & 1 male per team
  • Multiple teams can be entered from an organization (i.e.: school, code club…), however each individual can only be entered into 1 team

Entries

  • Your game needs to be coded with SCRATCH. Any version of the Scratch software can be used.
  • Your game needs to fit with the ‘Courageous Coders’ theme: How will your tech change the future of education?
  • You must produce and submit a 2-minute YouTube video explaining and showing how your game works, how it was coded and how it fits with the theme and judging criteria (see below). The video also needs to show the project Name and Logo that you or your team came up with.
  • It is recommended that your video is created using a screen capture and voice over method. This will allow the judges to clearly see the game and will avoid the need to include images of team members.

Winners

  • Need to be available for an online prize giving ceremony to be held in their local community – date to be communicated in due course by your Local Country Organizer.
  • Automatically agree to compete in both challenges (national & the Africa-wide) upon registration
    We suggest that a teacher, adult supervisor or code club volunteer initially registers each competitor / competing team.
  • You can register at any time so long as you feel you can complete the task by the submission deadline set for your country by your Local Country Organizer.
  • Some cool tech gadgets and more surprises are up for grabs in each country and at the pan-African level. Stay tuned!

Judging Criteria

Functionality & Innovation (50%)

  • Does the game work as intended?
  • Is the game easy to use?
  • Is the game imaginative?
  • Does the game include original and well written code?

Community Responsibility (25%)

  • Is the game accessible for its target audience? I.e., is it suitable for the age range you built it for?
  • How does the game address the theme?

Communications (25%)

  • Aesthetics: does the game display correctly and look nice?
  • Creativity and design of the game’s name and logo
  • Presentation of the game on the video

Watch /Listen to the media below for inspirational purposes:

Panel discussion/presentation for SAP and UNESCO Africa Code Week in commemoration of the International Day of the Youth


Kenya’s Caleb Ndaka, a 2018 Mandela Washington Fellow, sharing about his Kids Comp Project that he uses to teach kids how to code.


Five Fun Facts about Coding:

1.     There are nearly 700 coding languages in use today.

2.     The first reported coder was a woman named Ada Lovelace who created a program for an early mechanical computer in 1843.

3.     The first computer ‘bug’ was an actual bug! A dead moth caused a malfunction inside an early computer in 1947.

4.     In October 1958, Physicist William Higinbotham created what is thought to be the first video game called “Tennis for Two” – a kind of Pong ancestor.

5.     Computer code may look like a foreign language, but it’s actually pretty easy to learn. Keep an eye out for details about virtual coding workshops you can attend during this year’s Africa Code Week in October!


About Africa Code Week

Since 2015, SAP Africa Code Week (ACW) has been creating free opportunities for young Africans to learn coding skills and for teachers to be trained on digital learning curricula. Strong partnerships with the public, private and civil society sectors across 54 countries are driving sustainable impact by building teaching capacity and supporting the adoption of coding into national curricula in support of UN Sustainable Development Goals 4, 5 and 17.

In 2019 alone, the initiative saw 3.85M children participating in coding workshops. A deep-learning workshop also took place for 28 female teachers from 15 African countries with a goal to empower more African girls through coding skills. Join SAP and partners by visiting www.africacodeweek.org to find out more.

Interested in participating in ACW? Please register here for training resources and guidance.

Article by Mukalele Rogers

National Coordinator – ITAU

+256776960740 / +256706060740

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