Case study: Byron Hopkin

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Byron has been teaching for over 20 years, and is currently an IT teacher at Ysgol Dyffryn Aman. He is undertaking Technocamps’ 18-day Professional Learning Programme for Computing teachers and support staff.

Before the course, Byron was teaching Music and Music Technology (key stage 4 and 5), as well as IT (key stage 3), and is now concentrating on IT, having recently acquired a key stage 4 class in the subject too.

Byron has always been interested in computers and has always taught it at key stage 3. Strangely, he is one of the best at IT in his school (only missing out to the Head of Department!) and the school was looking to expand its provision at key stage 4 as only the Head of Department was able to teach it. Naturally, Byron took on the challenge…

For Byron, the most challenging part of the course is understanding the syntax and error messages (compiler) of code (Python). But he has really enjoyed getting to grips with Python, and especially the robotics aspect of the course. He was excited to be able to programme commands that had a physical result, even when it was block based.

Upon completion of the course, Byron will be teaching Python at key stage 4, and is very aware of the fact the school does not have provision for A-Level Computer Science. This is something he intends to improve before long.

“The course has been excellent! Initially I found it difficult but when I started to utilise my new knowledge in the classroom, it stuck!”