Located in North Grenville, Ontario, Oxford on Rideau Tech (OoR Tech) is aimed at assisting those interested in learning the basics of Computer Science, Code and Robotics.
On a volunteer basis, we have offered Computer Science (CS) based sessions, which combine CS concepts and working examples of current board curriculum, to all the children at Oxford on Rideau P.S. We are proud to say this effort will continue in the 2019 / 2020 school year. We have also assisted other local schools with introductions to the Hour of Code™ (code.org). Outside of the school / volunteer venue, we offer various courses aimed at introducing those interested to a number of tech. based topics.
We started, quite honestly, out of desperation in an attempt to save our school. On September, 2016 the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) released a draft report, proposing to close 29 schools. Oxford on Rideau public school, located in the heart of North Grenville, Ontario, was one of the 29 listed. Roughly 600 schools in Ontario were proposed for potential closure due to the Ontario Ministry of Education's new funding model. The UCDSB was in a tight spot, but we were determined to save our school. Many presentations to the board later, we were grasping at straws on what ideas we could use to make our school stand out and, perhaps, boost enrolment. On a seperate, unrelated outting one night we picked up a Sphero SPRK+ robot from Best Buy for the girls to have an educational "toy" to play with. After getting SPRK and checking out the Sphero website we decided maybe teaching kids code could bring something different into our little rural school. At first, we sort of shook off the idea and put it to the back burner. A week or so later while driving home we were talking with our oldest daughter (Addyson, 8 at the time) why the school might be closing and how we were trying to think of ideas to attract kids to the school. She responded with "why don't we bring Spark (the name they've given SPRK+) to school and I can teach younger kids how to use him"..........ok kiddo, you've grabbed our attention, so we ran with it. March 2, 2017 we presented the idea to the board, we started our first official in class sessions by hosting a couple Hour of Code™ days in June 2017.
From all of us at Oxford on Rideau Tech (OoR Tech), thanks for reading our story!
Don't think you can learn code? Not sure it's even that important? Why not try, you'd be surprised how simple, fun and empowering it can be! Watch this (video from code.org )