This week my Year 8 class asked if they could do something festive with me for their last lesson before we break up next week. Now I am not a believer in stopping work just because it is the last week of term, but I thought I could probably give them a Computer Science lesson and easily add a Christmas theme to get the best of both worlds. I gave them the choice of either using Python Turtle art to create festive pictures, or use Sonic Pi to “code” some Christmas music.
The class went for Sonic Pi; so I thought I would share my lesson plan here.
Continue reading Christmas Sonic Pi
We are just about to begin teaching our Python and Minecraft unit at school so I began testing everything out on our latest Raspberry Pi image to make sure we were ready for the lessons and adjust any of the lesson plans if necessary.
Our latest Raspberry Pi image runs Jessie. Now one of the improvements Jessie brings us is that the Print Screen button on your keyboard has been set up to run Scrot in the background to save a png screen shot into your home directory. You can read more about it here.
Now that is great as for quite some time taking a screen shot on your Raspberry Pi involved installing Scrot and then running it from the terminal; not the most user-friendly way to get students to take screen shots!
Continue reading Minecraft screen shots with your Raspberry Pi
I have seen many posts on both Twitter and CAS about teachers having issues getting their class Raspberry Pis to update and install software through their school firewalls, so I thought I would share the simple solution that I have implemented at my school.
It actually leverages something that I put in place for our Ubuntu Linux servers, but works just as well for Raspberry Pi devices too.
Continue reading Getting your Raspberry Pi to update through your school firewall
We have just purchased a set of Raspberry Pi 2 boards to upgrade our Raspberry Pi B+ / HDMIPI set-up which we have been using for Computer Science this year. I will not go into the reasons why or the specifications of the Raspberry Pi 2; but needless to say the performance increase seen will make teaching with these devices much easier!
So we received our new Pi 2 boards and got straight into removing the old B+ boards from our HDMIPI set-up and installing the new Pi 2 boards. Pretty soon I ran into an issue though; having replaced the Pi board and using one of our SD Cards with our current image installed on it, the system would not boot; it just sat there at the rainbow boot screen. It turns out that the Pi 2 has an updated ARM processor and therefore needs the latest updates installing for the Pi to boot. Now I could have just downloaded the latest Rasbian image and been up and running, but we have quite a few customisations to our image which I wanted to keep
Continue reading Updating our Raspberry Pi Image
So it’s a New Year and perhaps, like me for 2015 you have decided to learn some new skills or just brush up on some old ones! Well if you have then help is at hand, as Packt Publishing are running a promotion until the 6th January where you can buy any eBook from their extensive range for just £3.60 ($5) or less!
There are books to help you brush up on your Moodle skills, develop new skills in Python or even to pick up some new tips of things you can do with your Raspberry Pi!
To see the full details of the offer and all of the books available please visit this link: http://bit.ly/1uW4pQG
I’m now off to have a look through myself and decide what to get myself!