Tuesday 24 October 2017

Taoiseach Enda Kenny gets lesson in coding from Lauren (10)

Teacher: "So these little things are pixels and what they do is…"

Student: "Pixels. Pixels."

Teacher: "Yes, pixels. And they're basically tiny little dots which…"

Student: "Dots. Dots. Yes."

Thus began Taoiseach Enda Kenny's first lesson in coding. His erudite, patient teacher was 10-year-old Lauren Boyle from Foxrock in Dublin, who is 'EU Digital Girl of the Year 2014', an honour bestowed last month at the European Ada Awards ceremony in Rome as part of the 'e-Skills Making a Career with Digital Technologies' event.

"And what do I do with these things?" asked master pupil Kenny.

"Just click on that and then drag it down," replied Miss Boyle. "That's it, yes. Now you're done."

Freshly schooled, Kenny turned to an older group of student programmers, led by 16-year-old Harry McCann who founded the Digital Youth Council and is a teacher in Coderdojo programming classes for kids around the country.

"Come on over here lads til we all get a photo together," said Kenny, now a graduate. "And what is it that you're looking to do next?"

"Well, we could use a few bob," said McCann.

The impromptu coding session was to promote 'The Hour of Code 2014', which runs December 8 to 12 this year. Originally set up by Code.org, it's also being pushed by 'Excited', a digital learning movement that's growing fast in Ireland.

"Ireland topped the EU Code Week league table by holding more events than any other EU country," said Excite founder and former junior minister, Ciaran Cannon.

Online Editors

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