The Royal Society of Victoria aims to establish a state-wide network of coding and digital design clubs in partnership with the Local Learning & Employment Networks and the Council of Small Business of Australia.
Digital literacy is critical to the future of our society, industry and culture; familiarity with computer languages and digital realms is increasingly required for effective participation in most occupations and social networks.
Over 470 CoderDojos (https://coderdojo.com/) have been established over the world to support schools and communities in the challenge of teaching computer technology, programming and digital design, skills best learned when young. Classes are free, students just need to bring a network-enabled device (laptop, tablet) and be accompanied by a responsible adult (parent, grandparent, or guardian).
Victoria’s first CoderDojo was launched at the Wooranna Park Primary School in December 2014, supported by a startup grant from the Finkel Foundation. New participants and volunteers are always welcome and can join in by contacting Dojo Director Kieran Nolan at the school.
Following the success of the Wooranna Park program, we are now seeking to establish a network of coding clubs across regional and metropolitan Victoria to offer after school and weekend activities for families with kids demonstrating a proficiency or interest for coding and digital design. Through the amazing efforts of many, new Dojos are open in Gippsland (Warragul and Moe), Bendigo and Melbourne, with work underway to open up new Dojos in the Central Ranges. Other Dojos will follow as we work with the LLENs in each region and gather funding support to keep each centre thriving, connected to local communities and extended into industry and training channels for talented young Victorians.
In 2017 we are seeking funding to support a CoderDojo Victoria network officer to drive the start-up of local Dojos, liaise with local communities and schools, activate extension and industry programs available for local kids and establish a community of practice for Dojo leaders and volunteers across the State.