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Computer Science students get active with interactive at the Urdd Eisteddfod 2019

7 June 2019

Visitors to the Urdd Eisteddfod enjoyed a variety of fun-filled activities from the world of technology with staff and student STEM Ambassadors from the School of Computer Science & Informatics.

From 27 May – 1 June, the Urdd Eisteddfod festival of literature, music and performing arts drew more than 90,000 attendees, including 15,000 young people, to Cardiff Bay.

A team from the School of Computer Science & Informatics offered their time and enthusiasm to engage event-goers with a range of inspiring, family-friendly games and challenges that explored the key concepts of Computer Science and computational thinking.

People of all ages flocked to the stand in the Science & Technology Pavilion to enjoy the range of activities on offer. These included many unplugged activities, the building of  interactive robotic creations using Lego Mindstorms, programming block-based visuals using Scratch and experiencing an immersive environment through Virtual Reality (VR) goggles.

Cheryl McNamee-Brittain, Schools and College Liaison Officer at the School of Computer Science and Informatics, said: "We were delighted to take part in the Urdd Eisteddfod 2019. We hope that we helped those that visited developed an understanding of computer systems and the concepts of computational thinking and had some fun along the way. These are important skills for everyone, not just for computer scientists, and we want to make them more accessible among people of all age groups."

Anastasia Ugaste, STEM Ambassador at the School of Computer Science & Informatics, said: “I really enjoyed introducing young visitors to VR glasses and Mindstorm robots. Their excitement towards programming is so encouraging and allows us to create more interesting workshops. Working and exchanging knowledge with people from different departments and even Universities throughout the event was fascinating.”

Throughout the day the team showcased activities from the Playground Computing programme that Cardiff University delivers through the Technocamps initiative.

Technocamps is a project involving seven Universities in Wales that aims to motivate and involve young people aged 11-19 with Computer Science.  The programme has delivered over 1500 workshops to over 35,000 young people across Wales on programming, app development, games development, and robotics.

Cardiff University organises regular computational thinking and programming based workshops in the Cardiff region. Please contact Cheryl McNamee-Brittain or Dr Catherine Teehan to find out more.

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