Farnell element14, the development distributor, is shipping 65,000 micro:bit to schools in Denmark as part of an order from Boarding on behalf of the Danish Broadcasting Corporation. The three-year ‘ultra:bit’ programme, will use the micro:bit in the classroom to help transform Danish Year 4 students from passive technology consumers to digital pioneers.
“Programmes like this are essential if we are to break the cycle of ‘ready-made’ technology and prepare a generation of students for a working economy that will value skills such as computational thinking, problem solving and creativity more than ever before,” said Jonathan Smith, Head of Education at Premier Farnell and Farnell element14. “Working with devices such as the micro:bit, an activity we describe as physical computing allows students to venture into the real world with complex problem solving based around technology, and takes them from being mere consumers of technology to become creative thinkers capable of developing brand new dynamic solutions.”
Supplied with support from the Danish Industry Foundation, Industriens Fond, in collaboration with the country’s Centre for Learning Materials, CFU Denmark, the micro:bits will be used to develop the students’ understanding of technology and stimulate their digital creativity. With an overarching theme of ‘Children, Creativity and Technology’, the programme includes a broad variety of TV productions targeting children, as well as teacher training, classroom resources, a series of roadshows and even a children’s drama based around the micro:bit.
“To date we have helped deploy around 2 million devices in education, in over 55 countries worldwide including larger programmes in the United Kingdom, Iceland, Croatia, Canada and Singapore,” said Rob Rospedzihowski, Vice President of Sales at Farnell element14, EMEA. “We believe equipping students and teachers with the right tools will create new opportunities for a whole generation as they enter the workforce and programmes such as Ultra-bit in Denmark are leading the world in preparing students as the digital economy gather pace.”
The project is also supported by other organisations, including the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), the Micro:bit Foundation, IT and Learning Board, Engineer the Future, Coding Pirates, DigiPippi, BUPL and Danish School Students.