BBC to encourage coding revolution with Micro Bits

BBC

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The BBC has launched a new project in order to boost digital skills amongst British secondary school students. The corporation will be giving away one million Micro Bit mini-computers as part of the Make It Digital campaign to all 11-year-old pupils starting secondary school in the autumn term. The initiative will also include a season of coding-based programmes and activities.

The BBC will be offering a wealth of exercises and entertainment to show kids what the world of coding and programming has to offer. A drama based on the creation of British game series Grand Theft Auto will be aired, along with a documentary on Bletchley Park, where renowned computer scientist Alan Turing served the British military.

Joining forces with the likes of Microsoft, BT, Google, Code Club, TeenTech and Young Rewired State, who will all be getting involved with the campaign, the BBC hopes that Make It Digital will address the need for 1.4 million "digital professionals" by the British workplace over the next five years.

"This is exactly what the BBC is all about - bringing the industry together on an unprecedented scale and making a difference to millions," said BBC director-general Tony Hall. "Just as we did with the BBC Micro in the 1980s, we want to inspire the digital visionaries of the future. Only the BBC can bring partners together to attempt something this ambitious, this important to Britain's future on the world stage."

The Micro Bit computer is still in the prototype phase, and the BBC is working with several partners, including chip-designer ARM, Microsoft and Samsung, to make sure that the final device is perfect for schools. The final product will be compatible with the Touch Develop, Python and C++ coding languages.

Make it Digital controller Jessica Cecil said: "With a dedicated season of programming on the BBC, 5,000 digital trainees, one million children who take their first steps with a Micro Bit, and a host of educational activity, we hope to inspire a new generation to get creative with digital.”

Read the full story at the BBC website. Contact [email protected] for more information.

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