The camps and after-school programmes are always really interesting and fun. I think the best thing about HackLab is the staff. MrC, Mac, and J-Dave are his favourites. As a parent, I'm really impressed with how patient Mac is with helping my son grasp some difficult coding concepts.
HackLab shows a mysterious and technical world to him, which is attractive for both boys and girls. He enjoys Science and is obsessed with Technology but I believe it is the team at HackLab, MrC especially, who show him how to thoroughly enjoy what he is doing.
It was great for him to spend a whole day with like-minded tech enthusiasts his own age. He is a child who's usually quite shy yet he feels comfortable approaching the HackLab team as he has great respect for their subject knowledge and individual expertise. As a parent, I find MrC's history of education reassuring and having been to a workshop myself, I can see a great classroom practitioner at work: explaining things clearly with good humour yet at the same time, using careful questioning to empower people to think for themselves.
Hacklab is marvellous. My son has been going for ages and continues to adore it. The team are always bringing in new activities and ideas based on the latest tech knowledge. It's great fun and the kids are learning vital skills at the same time. It's a great way to get into coding and make new friends.
He was so motivated and enjoyed every second. He even came home wanting to do more after a long day! You were all extremely approachable and friendly. The course content also seemed at the right level and was exciting. I had bought him a pi but we struggled to get going with it. [F] came home after the first night and set it up easily.
He particularly enjoyed the re programming of Minecraft day. Holding the camps at Microsoft was inspirational to the children, not to mention meeting like-minded children in a friendly atmosphere.
My daughter came back really enthused and wanting to go another day. Working a full day on a fixed project was a really nice way of getting an idea of what types of projects are possible. Plus she said she made new friends, so she enjoyed the social aspect of the club.
My son was thrilled to be in a room with other kids who were passionate about computers and technology like him. Computers (programming, operating systems, hardware) is a non-stop obsession for him, and no one in his school is quite so passionate (or single-minded) about as him. So HackLab was a real blessing for him, in many ways!
My son loved doing this all day and really getting his teeth into it - he normally gets no more than 1.5 hours at a time in tech club or at school. Also he really enjoyed doing something applied - ie. using sensors etc in combination with programming to make a trap or a rocket. Integrating programming with other functions was great - not completely screen focussed.
My son loved it! He was so engaged that he told us all about it every day. Normally he tells us nothing about anything he's doing. He loved it and thinks it's one of the best things he's ever taken part in.
Without any doubt he enjoyed it! He said he wished school was like this. We were jet-lagged having returned from holiday the previous day, but he jumped out of bed every morning - and fell asleep in the car going home!
They had a great time, really enjoyed the lectures and really loved the one given by Chris Bishop as they had seen him to his lecture during the science week on rockets. The whole course was very inspiring for them and thought Mr. C and Pippa were great. so THANK YOU for a great week! He really loved his time with you, and he's already looking forward to his next camp!
My daughter grew in confidence over the three days. She really enjoyed it and is so very proud of what she made.
The fact he came home enthused, happy not to be a 'nerd' as he had friends there, really fired up to do things (we had RPi in the cupboard, he suddenly built it) genuinely motivated and at its most simple ... a great couple of days out. If they never do anything else (which I doubt) it's fabby.
There are so many positives! Key ones are a total immersion in technology with fun style of learning. Lloyd thought is was a super cool thing to do, has continued learning more at home (with the t-shirt on!) and is keen to do so. The Hacklab team are knowledgeable, fantastic role models, excellent instructors; the sessions are dynamic, interesting and exciting to attend. Plus, I felt Lloyd was safe and well looked after.
This was the first time Daniel had done something like this and he had a great time. He made some new friends and it made him think imaginatively and work as part of a team.
Very inspirational. Oliver enjoyed it more than he has ever enjoyed any other holiday activities. Excellent organisation. Runs for the whole working day which is good for working parents.
It was a great experience – my son learned a lot, was engaged and excited, felt that he had a real contribution to make over the week, and just really enjoyed it. The professional atmosphere is inspiring for the children, and the staff are so friendly and helpful.
Opportunities to learn news skills, develop existing ones, have access to top teaching and have some fun while doing it.
Morgan was enthused by coding, and has now got her Raspberry Pi out of it's packaging at home and is coding and making her own films. She learnt about the relevance of why it was a great skill to be able to code, rather than to simply use other people's software. She had lots of fun!
A chance for Charlie to develop his love of programming by learning something new and to do this together with other like-minded children to enable him to make friends and work with others.
It encourages, supports, develops and reinforces Liberty's interest in science, maths, computers and coding specifically. There is not much else that is fun, or can be done as an extra curricular activity that does that.
An awesome day at the Microsoft building making games with Scratch. Tom also loved going to the park and meeting all the other children.
Very easy online booking. I liked the quick response to my initial concerns. The camp was well organised and I felt confident about leaving Charlie on the first morning as it was calm and structured.
Would definitely come again - she also got to see it was for everyone, and that it opened up a whole new world to her.
Yes. He has only used scratch before, so creating roblox games was something completely new. It has widened his horizons for possible future careers. My husband and I were impressed by the emphasis on team working and presentation at the end, which are skills that will also be needed by any future engineer or programmer.
ABSOLUTELY DEFINITELY. It’s AMAZING. Definitely 10/10.'
William is still working on his project at home, "fixing" some things. It is great that he has been inspired to carry on working in this way and doubtless good experience for the world of work later on!
I don't book holiday clubs for childcare - they have to offer something that my kids will really gain from and enjoy and I feel Hack lab delivered a great learning experience.
Thank you for giving my son a fun and memorable week of his holidays. I think he now feels he is not the 'odd one out' as he sometimes does at school, there are loads of other kids whole love to code out there, just like him.
Sam loved his 2 days with you. He especially enjoyed the first, Minecraft Matrix. He liked the Group activity at the beginning of the day as well as the computer work. Staff were excellent, friendly and thoughtful about it being Sam's first time and that he was attending on his own.
I always learn new stuff at Hacklab. It is fun and interesting and I like being with my friends and making new friends at Hacklab. IT IS AWESOME!
HackLab Student, 11 years
The girls thought your work shop was BRILLIANT. It was fantastic to watch how you all had 47 Guides totally engaged and excited in what they were doing for the whole 2 hours, they were absolutely thrilled with the fact that they could make the sensor do what they were asking it too. The gentle fun way that MrC explained what they were doing made sense to the girls, and to be able to see the results in the lights was truly rewarding. Pippa, Mac and MrC explained in a simple, friendly way the reasons why the girls were getting problems with their programming which gave them the encouragement to try a little more, and to ask for help when they went wrong again. I would and have been recommending to lots of people that they really should try out one of your work shops. Thank you all for such a fantastic evening.
Alison and The 3rd Histon Girl Guides
Young smart people teaching young enthusiastic kids about coding.
My son really enjoyed participating in the 2 previous HackLab events he's been involved with at Microsoft Research. On the second one he worked so hard every evening on the game he and his team had been working on. It was great to see him so fired up. We admire what you and your HackLab colleagues are doing very much.