Twitter Dublin launches CoderDojo club with students from local community

By Ronan Costello
Thursday, 15 December 2016

Twitter Dublin has long supported @CoderDojo, a global network of free coding clubs for children. Since founding in 2011, CoderDojo has grown from its roots in Cork, with over 1,100 Dojos established in 63 countries. Last Saturday, another Dojo was added to that tally. A group of volunteer employees and some developers welcomed 35 students to the first class of CoderDojo at Twitter Dublin.

Twitter Dublin recently settled in a new permanent nest on Fenian Street in Dublin 2. This city centre location puts our International HQ right in the heart of old Georgian Dublin and the diverse communities that have grown up around this historic part of the city. A significant part of this community faces challenges, both economic and otherwise. With our new Dojo, we want to offer coding classes to kids who might not otherwise have the opportunity to learn coding languages. The goal is to build their technical capacity and digital awareness early on.

As the students arrived, we divided them into four main learning centres; two for Scratch, one for HTML, and one for Arduino. They immediately set to work, needing little encouragement. Demonstrating ingenuity well beyond their years, the group were soon blazing ahead with their own coding projects. Some made games, some made robots, while others created websites dedicated to Kanye West.

Many of these students came from @MarianCollege. Marian College is a DEIS school with a student body that have historically come from generally disadvantaged backgrounds. It’s also one of the more diverse schools in Dublin city, with over 30 nationalities represented among its pupils. These kids came to @TwitterDublin on Saturday afternoon, giving up their free time, and getting stuck in with a diligence their teacher, @MitchLindsay3, joked he had not often seen before. Mitch is the kind of teacher that makes CoderDojo possible - compassionate, generous with his time, and totally committed to the education and betterment of his students.

Special thanks are due to the developers who led each class, many of whom came from @Cluster_ie, a co-working space in the city centre. If you’re a Dublin-based developer and you’d like to help out in 2017, email twitter.ie@coderdojo.com.

We’re excited to see what the @TwitterDublin CoderDojo Ninjas will accomplish in the new year!