I have been putting off doing this for a while now, trying to google different fun ways to start off a blog and so far nothing has really helped. So let's get this awkward first blog post done and out into the world.
You may have stumbled across my blog if you are someone who is involved with teaching or learning about coding and all things engineering in general, or maybe you’re just a nosey friend or family member. Either way, hello and thank you!
Whilst it has taken me quite a long time to pluck up the courage to write this and share it with the world (yes, this did start off as a project in lockdown 1.0 but in my defence, I have also just bought my first house with my partner so that has taken up quite a lot of my time in the last few months). I’m hoping that this blog will be a great space for me to share what I have learned about showing young people how exciting and creative the world of coding and engineering. I also want to use it as a space to share resources that I have tried and tested - including the ideas and great plans that fell flat on their face during a session because those are always the best ones to learn from.
Just for background, I feel like I should include a quick introduction about who I am 👇
Hello, my name is Tanya. I’m originally from Caithness in the Highlands and I moved to Edinburgh to study Computer Science at Heriot-Watt University. After graduating, I thought it would be a fun idea to start a PhD (I know). I really enjoy reading, doing research and exploring different solutions to a problem so it made sense at the time.
About 1 year into my postgraduate, I realised that the academic world wasn’t for me and just like magic I had stumbled across a start-up in the centre of town working on an educational robot called Marty to make coding accessible and fun for young people in school. They also happened to be looking for someone to write lesson plans to show educators how they could use Marty the Robot in the classroom with their students. It also included lots of outreach and running workshops with schools and coding clubs.
At first, I wasn’t going to accept the opportunity because what did I know about teaching or writing lesson plans. I had been running CoderDojo code clubs around Edinburgh for several years and I had done a few summers teaching creative coding for an international summer school so looking back, I was maybe a little harsh on myself. That being said, I was super excited about the opportunity and thought it was worth exploring. I joined the team and got a very start-up job title - Learning Experience Designer.
Fast forward a couple of years and I’m now working at a football club. Yup, you read that right. I’m a computer science graduate who was working at an educational start-up now working at a football club in Scotland. More on that in a future post.
I started my new position just before lockdown so I have had a total of 3 days in the office. So it is safe to say that it has not been the most traditional start to a new job. I have been loving the new challenges that come with the position of Digital Education Programme Manager for a football club and I can’t wait to share a little bit more about the work that we do and why I think it’s so important.
I’m sure you will find out more about me in future blog posts but at least for now, I feel like I have done the polite thing and introduced myself.
Thank you so much for joining me for my first blog post. Please feel free to leave a comment telling me where you're from or get in touch directly, I love a good chat and would enjoy finding out more about you too!