Hour of Code to launch in UK

Coding initiative for students to launch in the UK from 8 to 12 December 2014, after success in the US

The Hour of Code campaign is coming to UK shores after Code.org launched its global campaign to reach 100 million people.

The Hour of Code encourages individuals to learn the basics of computer programming in 60 minutes. The campaign will run from 8 to 12 of December 2014 and is designed to introduce individuals to coding through tutorials such as how to create your own Angry Bird app.

Previously launched in the US, the campaign claims to have reached close to 20 million students.

Head of Hour of Code UK Avid Larizadeh said the campaign was created to ensure the next generation doesn't miss out on the potential the digital world offers and the ability for them to succeed in it.

“It’s essential everyone can understand the link between code, and the fundamentals that underpin every device and piece of technology we all use today. The Hour of Code acts as a fun, engaging introduction to this world,” she said.

Hour of Code in the UK is being supported by several industry heavyweights, including Baroness Martha Lane Fox, Ian Livingstone, Sherry Coutu, Karen Price and Baroness Joanna Shields – digital advisor to the prime minister.

Code.org has also launched a crowdfunding initiative to raise $5m to train 10,000 computer science teachers worldwide.

Several Code.org donors, including Microsoft, Google, Bill Gates and LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman, have already agreed to match donations up to $2.5m.

To participate in the Hour of Code UK, click here for more information. 

Not to be confused with the Year of Code

At the beginning of 2014, the government injected £500,000 into computing teacher training, to ensure schools were prepared for software coding when the new ICT curriculum started in September 2014.

The funding was part of the Year of Code campaign, which was launched to get young people excited about computer science throughout the year.

The Year of Code started in September 2014, enabling technology businesses – which provided 50% of funding for projects to train computing teachers – to bid for match-funded grants.

The programme was put together by teachers and industry experts, including the BCS, The Chartered Institute, the Royal Academy of Engineering, Microsoft and Google, as well as leaders in the computer games industry.

Read more on IT technical skills