Coding Competition

​About the competition

The Worshipful Company of Information Technologists (WCIT, a City of London Livery Company), Northamptonshire County Council, Code Club and the University of Northampton have organised a competition which encourages creativity and problem solving, and aims to inspire young people to achieve digital fluency through collaboration and challenge.

The competition was successfully launched in Northamptonshire in 2015, with entrants required to create a game based on the theme of 'saving energy'. This 2017/18 edition of the competition asks you to demonstrate what 'healthy lifestyles' mean to you, and is now operating at the national scale, specifically targeting high levels of participation in Northamptonshire and its neighbouring counties.

Feeling inspired? Check out the game created by our previous winners, Park Junior School’s ‘Team Sparky’, to crank those inspiration levels up through the roof!

 A previous winner's game

​The Challenge

Teams consisting of between 3 to 6 members of children born between 1 September 2006 and 31 August 2009 will design a game based on the theme of 'healthy lifestyles' using the coding programme Scratch. Participants will also have to come up with their own team name and logo. They will then present their game to the judges with a 2 minute video uploaded to YouTube.

The games will be judged by our panel, and the very best entry will be awarded this year’s Coding Competition shield. Furthermore, each team member from the winning team will be given a personal Raspberry Pi starter pack.

Some great prizes are also awarded to teams finishing second and third place; members of the team adjudged to have finished second will each be given a Raspberry Pi computer, and the members of the team finishing in third place will each receive BBC micro:bit.

Signing up

Complete our form by Monday 9 October to let us know that you are interested in entering the Coding Competition. You can even use the form to request additional support from our team.

Register your interest 

Submit

Have you created your game and recorded a two minute YouTube video explaining how it works? Then it's now time to enter your submission into the Coding Competition.

Submit your entry

​Here you can download everything you’ll need to start the challenge and design your award-worthy app.

Your challenge is to design and code a game in Scratch which is based on the theme of 'Healthy lifestyles'. This could be a character who grows fruit and vegetables to feed the local community, or maybe a game where you need to help your athlete to drink enough water to perform at their very best. Be creative!

Your team will make a two minute video explaining and demonstrating your game. This should be uploaded to YouTube and the link submitted to the judges on this website by 9 February 2018.

Your game will be judged on the following criteria:

Functionality and innovation (50%)

  • Does the game work as intended?
  • Is the game easy to use?
  • Is the game imaginative?
  • Does the game include original and well written code?

Marketing (25%)

  • Aesthetics of the game – Does the game display correctly and look nice?
  • Creativity and design of your game’s name and logo
  • Presentation of your game on the video

Community responsibility (25%)

  • Is your game accessible for its target audience? I.e., is it suitable for the age range you built it for?
  • How does your game address the theme of 'Healthy lifestyles'?

Downloads

11 ​September 2017 – Competition launches

Explore this website to find out how the competition will work, the resources and support available, prizes to be won, and the aspirations behind the initiative. Ask questions, communicate with the partners and get inspired.

9 October 2017 – Registration of interest

This is your opportunity to formally register your interest to participate in the competition and let us know if there is any extra support you need to help you on your way.

9 February 2018 – Submission deadline

Make sure you’ve submitted your completed entry using the form on this website by the deadline.

10 February to 28 February 2018 – Judging period

Our judging panel will review all of the entries.

Early March 2018 (date to be confirmed with the competition winners) – Prize giving

Our winning team will be presented with the Coding Competition shield in a prize giving ceremony held in their local community.

​The WCIT have generously provided some very exciting prizes to reward and encourage the country’s most skilled young coders.

  • The Coding Competition shield will be awarded to the winning team at a prize giving ceremony held in the team’s local community
  • Each member of the winning team will be given a personal Raspberry Pi starter kit to encourage them to continue developing their coding skills
  • Each member of the team finishing in second place will receive a Raspberry Pi
  • Each member of the team finishing in third place will receive a BBC micro:bit
  • All competition participants will receive a certificate recognising their efforts and achievements

​Need some help? We’ve pulled together some resources to help you on your way and take your coding skills to the next level.

Frequently Asked Questions

If in doubt, refer to our 'Frequently Asked Questions' page for guidance on all things Coding Competition. If still in doubt, let us know! We are here to support on any questions or queries you may have, and if we think that others are experiencing the same issues or concerns as you then your question will be added to our 'Frequently Asked Questions' page.

So, what are you waiting for? Ask us a question.

Resources

  • Even if you have never coded before, don’t let that put you off from participating. There is a free, online training resource that is available for those interested in teaching computer coding to children of primary school age. Take the time to sign up now.
  • Check out Code Club's projects for some extra practice.
  • The Scratch website has examples and help.

Ask for help

If you’re stuck on a particular sequence, need a hand navigating a programme, or have a specific question about the competition, contact us using the details found below.

​The Coding Competition was devised as the first project resulting from the strategic alliance between Northamptonshire County Council and the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists. The competition is a way to encourage increased and improved teaching of computer coding and digital learning.

The WCIT have generously provided the prizes for the competition, as well as offering their expertise and insight in the IT industry to competition participants.

Code Club is a national programme passionate about getting kids coding, and their afterschool clubs are well established across the country. Why not start your own Code Club? Everything you could need to know before you start is available on the Code Club website.

The University of Northampton’s Computing and Immersive Technologies department is an enthusiastic supporter of the competition.

How old do I need to be to enter the competition?
Team members must have been born between 1 September 2006 and 31 August 2009

How many team members do we need to enter the competition?
Teams need to consist of between three to six members of children of the eligible age.

How do we register our team?
A teacher, adult supervisor or Code Club volunteer needs to register your team on the Coding Competition website. The individual responsible for registering your team must be able to demonstrate UK residency.

When can we enter the competition?
Your team can submit its entry from 9am on 11 September 2017 to 4pm on 9 February 2018. You’re getting ahead of yourself a little here though; would you like to know what we are expecting from our entries?

What is our team expected to enter, how do we create it and how do we submit it?
Woah! You have asked a lot of questions there, but that’s more like it.

Once you have finalised your team, you need to decide upon a Team Name and design a Team Logo. Your team must then create a game that fits the theme of ‘Healthy lifestyles’. The game needs to be coded in the software programme ‘Scratch’, and any version of the Scratch software can be used. Check out the Scratch community by visiting the Scratch website.

Once you are happy with your completed game, you need to create a 2 minute YouTube video which explains and shows how the game works, how it was coded and how the game fits with the competition marking criteria, which can be found above. For this, we recommend that you use a screen capture and voice over method so that judges can clearly see the game. Please do not include images of team members in your video, but remember that the video needs to show the Team name and Team Logo that the team has designed.

To submit the YouTube video, upload the video link above. Please make sure that the video’s privacy setting is set to ‘Public’ or ‘Unlisted’.

It would be great if there were a place for us to meet up with fellow coders to discuss our ideas and receive one to one support from coding gurus… what would we call such a place?
Hold on, you just described a Code Club! Code Clubs are very real places where your team can meet to work on your game with the help of adult volunteers. Find your nearest Code Club or encourage an adult supervisor to set one up.

What support is available to us if we get stuck?
If you’re stuck on a particular sequence, need a hand navigating a programme, or have a specific question about the competition, contact us using the following email address, quoting ‘Coding Competition 2017/18’ in the email subject: thecodingcomp@gmail.com.

Is this support also available to our adult supervisor?
Of course, and if they feel as though they would like some additional support to help them get started in teaching Scratch, they may wish to enrol on the following free online training course provided by the Raspberry Pi Foundation: Teaching Programming in Primary Schools.

What other resources are available to us that may be of use?
Our official ‘Rules and Advice’ document is a good place to start…

As is our ‘Terms and Conditions’ document. The ‘Scratch’ section of the Code Club Projects resource provides step-by-step guides for creating Scratch projects to help you better understand how to program your own game.

OK, we’re comfortable with what is required from our team, but what do we get if we win?
Great question. Besides the pride that will no doubt be associated with being crowned the best young coders in the country, the winning team will also be presented with the prestigious Coding Competition shield, to be awarded at a prize giving ceremony held in their local community. Furthermore, each member of the winning team will also be given a Raspberry Pi Starter Kit to encourage them to continue developing their coding skills.

Members of the team finishing in second place will each receive their own Raspberry Pi computer in recognition of their supreme coding abilities!

Members of the team finishing in third place will each receive their own BBC micro:bit. If you’ve finished third in a national coding competition, it’s the least you deserve!

All competition participants will receive a certificate recognising their efforts and achievements.

Now we’re really keen to enter! Are there any other key dates we should be aware of?
Another great question. So, you already know that the competition opens at 9am on 11 September 2017 and the submission deadline is at 4pm on 9 February 2018.

9 October 2017 is another key date that you should be aware of. This marks the date by which we encourage you to formally register your interest to participate in the competition and to let us know if there is any extra support that you need.

Once the submission deadline passes on 9 February 2018, our judging panel will judge all submitted and eligible entries from 10 February 2018 to 28 February 2018.

And finally, in early March 2018 our winning team will be presented with their Coding Competition shield in a prize giving ceremony held in their local community. The date of the ceremony is to be confirmed with the competition winners.