01 8331554          info@greenlanes.ie

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Five children from third to sixth class are invited to attend the Diocesan Service for Pupils and Teachers of Primary Schools at Christ Church Cathedral on Thursday, 18th October 2018, 11.00 a.m. This year’s theme is “A Place to Call Home” and there will be a collection in aid of The Irish Refugee Council during the service.

Children attending will leave Greenlanes at 10am and take a taxi with Reverend Lesley and Cathy Atkin to Christ Church Cathedral. Children will return to school before 2pm. 

Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if your child would like to attend. If more than five children would like to attend we will put the names in a hat and select five. 

If you have any further questions, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Cathy Atkin

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Dear Parents,

This is to update you with news about CoderDojo at Greenlanes. Following a great last year (our third), CoderDojo at Greenlanes will be happening again at the school this term (October-Christmas) and next term (January-Easter). 

What Is CoderDojo?

CoderDojo is a worldwide movement of free, volunteer-led, community-based programming clubs for young people that started in Ireland. You can find more Information about CoderDojo here: https://coderdojo.com/ We believe running a CoderDojo in Greenlanes has benefits beyond being a fun activity for the children, including:

  • Exposing children to programming earlier, helping them become technology creators not just consumers
  • Locating a local CoderDojo in the school pushes the STEM curriculum (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) and Greenlanes’ focus on numeracy
  • Encouraging both girls and boys in the STEM subjects from an early age
  • Young people who attend sessions (Dojos) also learn complementary skills of logical thinking, problem-solving, presentation and communication skills. Children are encouraged to present their work at the end of a session, or as frequently as they wish. This has been popular with the children at Greenlanes CoderDojo.
  • Within the CoderDojo Movement, there is a focus on community, peer learning, youth mentoring and self-led learning.  The mentors are there to nudge the coders along, not formally teach them.
  • With computer science now a post-primary school subject, exposure to it now will help children decide if it's for them and give them a head start.

How Does CoderDojo work at Greenlanes?

  • CoderDojo at Greenlanes is run by parents. We have two leaders (Richard Watson and John Forrest) and other parent mentors.
  • We'll run Coderdojo on Mondayafternoon each week. This will be 5.30-6.30pm. 
  • We run CoderDojo in the school computer room, so we can fit about 12 coders (and their parents) in there.
  • There is no cost to participateand there never will be. 
  • Children can either bring their own laptops or can use the school computers. The advantage of bringing your own laptop is children can continue their projects at home on the same computer. Any operational laptop should work fine. Please do not go and buy anything new for CoderDojo. If you are keen but don't have a usable laptop, we will be able to use the school computers.
  • In CoderDojo, parents stay with their children for the hour. The CoderDojo in Greenlanes is not intended to be a period of after-school childcare. We recognise that this presents issues for families in which parents are working or looking after other children. We suggest that, by prior arrangement with mentors, parents can ‘double up’ on the children they are staying with. But the parent:children ratio must be 2:1 (including other non-participating younger children). This enables the volunteer mentors to concentrate on assisting the coders with their programming, while parents ensure their children are not disrupting the others, or help out with the running of the Dojo. Many parents will also enjoy learn about coding themselves so that they can help their children with their coding projects at home and the parent gets to share the journey that their children are on. If you want to bring a coder to CoderDojo but he or she has a younger sibling, that's fine, bring them too.
  • The organisers and mentors will communicate everything to parents, using email, never to children directly.

What Coding Are We Doing?

Because we have coders at different levels, at CoderDojo in Greenlanes this term we are running two separate activities in parallel:

1. Beginners will be coding in the Scratch programming environment. More information on Scratch can be found here:https://scratch.mit.edu/ Beginners will work through 9 great projects introducing different areas of Scratch, something different each week. One week you will be drawing rainbow coloured snowflakes, another week you’ll be coding a space game with a ship avoiding asteroids.

2. Experienced coders that are regulars in CoderDojo & have already done advanced Scratch projects and maybe some Python (you know who you are, we'll be contacting you directly). We would love you to come back and help us mentor the beginners while working on your own big projects. 

What to do Now?

If you are interested in CoderDojo for your child, please get in touch by emailing us at   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  (Not to the school directly, please). Let us know if you are interested for this term (and you can make Mondays 5.30-6.30pm), or for a future term and we will add your child’s name to the ‘interested’ list. For now, all our coders are in 1st class and up. Even if you have previously contacted us, or your child has already done CoderDojo, please send an update, if you are interested in this term or next. You can also come to the parents association AGM on Tuesday 2nd October where I'll be saying a few words about CoderDojo and answering any questions you have. We expect to start Monday October 8th.

Note: Due to the high level of interest generated in previous years, we expect to be over-subscribed.

This year our focus is completely new beginners. So if you have already done a term in CoderDojo, please bear with us, but we will be prioritising the beginners this term.

We want to apologize in advance to you and your children if you wish to participate, but there isn't a space for you this term. We'll allocate the places we have for this term and next term as fairly as we can. We always need more parent mentors. These are typically parents whose children are in CoderDojo and can work independently so that their parent can help other children as well. The number of parent volunteer mentors we have had has limited how much progress we can make. No formal programming experience is necessary, but you need to be interested in learning about it. Our hope is that more parent mentors come forward then we can find ways to have more children participate at the same time and make the whole thing more sustainable (e.g., we sometimes have to cancel if the leaders cannot make it a particular week).  If we have enough interest from parent volunteers, we will run Scratch programming training for parents.

Many Thanks

We are grateful to the school for their continued support. The support of the Board of Management, the Principal, Vice Principal, and the Parents Association is critical for us to run CoderDojo. Thanks also to the parents of all the previous coders who have come to CoderDojo and got involved.

Please get in touch with us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.with any questions or comments.

Yours in coding, 

Richard Watson (dad of Nicholas in 1st class and Naoise in 5th)

John Forrest (dad of Alice in 2nd class and Ben in 5th)

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Hi All,
It is fantastic to see that lots of Greenlanes kids already cycle to school and I think that they would all benefit from some cycling skills coaching.  Cycling Ireland run a programme called ‘Sprocket Rockets’ which is aimed at teaching kids aged 5-11 the basic skills of cycling (http://www.cyclingireland.ie/page/programmes/sprocket-rocket). You may have seen it at the Bikefest in St. Anne’s park during the summer – the kids really enjoy it. I’ve been in touch with Cycling Ireland and they could run a coaching course (“train the coaches”) on Saturday 27th October in the school grounds.The idea is that we get a bunch of parents trained to deliver the Sprocket Rocket skills programme and then we could run sessions with the kids in the school (Garda vetting would be required at this point but not ahead of the 27th October). If you are interested in taking part please let me know ASAP @ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  Depending on the number of participants the cost is likely to be €20-30 per person.
Thanks
Colm Sevastopulo (Parent of George, Oscar and Vicky) 

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