Remember those assignments in the first week back at school? “Please tell us what you did over your summer holidays.” Oh how I groaned as I picked up my pen and tried to remember the fun and interesting bits … Continue reading
Fire Tech Camp offers short courses for ages 9-17 - getting the next generation of developers coding and creating. Learn real coding languages and techniques as used by the pros!
Creativity. Innovation. Technology. Fire Tech Camp is bringing these together to empower your child with the skills and environment to build something amazing. Fire Tech Camp are London’s only tech daycamps, putting the power of technology into kids’ hands so that they can create their own games, design their own smartphone apps, and build robots to do their bidding! During school holiday periods children age 9 to 17 will spend five days at Imperial College or another great venue gaining great skills, and getting exposure to the inner workings of the games and tech world. New for 2014 - we now also offer special one day events on Wearable Tech and Minecraft. Young people will make new friends, stretch their horizons, and enjoy the support of a world class team.
Our mission is to teach young people to create and innovate through technology.
We ascribe to the 4 C’s of 21st Century Education: Creativity, Collaboration, Communication and Critical Thinking. We want young people to engage in work that is meaningful to them, with the support of a world-class team. We want to provide parents with an outstanding service and we want to provide kids and teens with an experience that will continue to benefit them long after the week is finished. We want young people to be able to access technology education, whatever their economic circumstances. Scholarship Program Work with Us
Jill Hodges is an American technology enthusiast with over 25 years of experience in building and growing new businesses. She has worked in financial services marketing, equity valuation and analysis, and as a management consultant. Jill and her husband have been in Europe for more than 20 years and they have two tech-mad children aged 10 and 12. She is passionate about giving children opportunities to be creative, and about turning their love of technology into innovation, skills and confidence.
I grew up in a techy family. We worked on “Trash-80” computers, writing fun programs, hanging out on “bulletin boards” and hacking games during the 1980’s in America. This was the environment that gave birth to a generation of tech entrepreneurs. But as the technology became more user-friendly, the consumers got further from the code, until the games became a black box. Today many of our kids love to consume games, apps and websites, but don’t know how to CREATE in their favourite media. On a recent trip to the US, I saw kids getting exposure to coding and robotics in after-school clubs and at summer camps. In fact, one company alone in the US hosts more than 30,000 kids in tech camp programmes! When I looked for something similar back home in London I couldn't find any extra-curricular programmes -- so I started one up myself.
We are getting kids "under the hood" of their favourite technologies, helping them build something they are proud of. And we are offering parents a new generation of constructive, stimulating activities for their children during school breaks.
Imperial College is the flagship location for Fire Tech Camps. Imperial College is consistently ranked top university in London, with a reputation for excellence in science-based subjects. Fire Tech Campers will in many cases be enjoying the use of Imperial’s excellent facilities, and in many cases will be supported by student instructors from top universities, including Imperial. Not all camps are held at Imperial, so be sure to check the location of the camp you are booking!
16-20 December 2013 camps will be held at Imperial, as will our Sunday Series, starting 12 Jan 2014. February half-term camps will be held at the Baden-Powell House, (65-67 Queen's Gate, London SW7 5JS).
(Note: Fire Tech Camp is not an Imperial College programme and we are not officially affiliated with Imperial College. )
Fire Tech Camp has inspired me to believe in myself and I had an amazing experience at Fire Tech Camp and I really want to go in the summer. Thank you so much! - 12 year old App Developer
A fun and challenging experience to teach you the basics of video game production with excellent instructors, and a warm and friendly environment. - 14 year old Games Designer
Fire Tech Camp was a great experience and the best camp I've ever been to. I think the camp does a great job in combining fun with learning. - 11 year old Games Designer
Fire Tech Camp was really fun because we got to make our very own video game. I really enjoyed this camp, and it is awesome! - 9 year old Games Designer
Fire Tech Camp is well-made, the instructors are friendly and very helpful, the atmosphere is very enjoyable and we meet great people in the camp. I highly recommend Fire Tech Camp to people wanting to immerse in the tech world. – 13 year old Games Designer
It was amazing because I learnt about coding robots and using different sensors for their various functions. – 13 year old Robotics Engineer
The most epic of computing journeys I have been on and I like the staff and the activities! – 12 year old App Developer
Fire Tech Camp provided my kids an experience to create a game and gave them a greater appreciation for what it takes to make the games they play. I highly recommend the camp for any child who is interested in computer games. I’ve already enrolled my children in the robotics summer camp.
A unique and inclusive learning experience across all ages.
Great initaitve. Hope it takes off and accelerates.
Jill’s a wonderful, inspiring leader, determined that children should find the world of technology engaging and fun. It was great to see the enthusiasm of her teaching team. My children talked endlessly about their latest discoveries, Fire Tech definitely sold them on the idea that science is exciting and fun, something I would never have achieved alone.
Paying for three children to attend is slightly uncomfortable as the camp is not the cheapest option for holiday courses. HOWEVER, they all want to return (which is a first), they had a lot of fun and were inspired. What you do that is so different from other camps is to treat them as young university students – my three are of an age where they are independent thinks an deasily feel indignant if treated as “children.” They are very lucky to be afforded the resect and the learning opportunities in a first class environment (I’m slightly jealous to be honest.)
My daughter continued working on her app for two hours more after she got home at 5 pm. That’s how much she enjoyed it.
My son had a challenging and stimulating week designing his app under the guidance of the Fire Tech faculty, giving him a unique IT experience beyond the scope of the school curriculum. Thank you!
Thank you for accommodating my son aged 11 years with special needs. His passions are technology and engineering - we were honest with you about his difficulties and you did everything you could to make sure that he was settled, included and gained more than we could ever have hoped for in terms of learning and enjoyment. Thank you for your positive and practical approach. It is a very special feeling for a parent of a child whose life isn't straightforward to know that there are wonderful people in this world like you and your course tutors who will do all they can to reach out to the youngster and look forward with them to see what they can achieve. Best wishes for your future courses.
You can see answers to our most frequently asked questions in our FAQs
We are also happy to hear from you if you have any queries or need help with your booking.
Jill Hodges, Founder
Genevieve Smith-Nunes is the Head of Curricula Development and Training and she and her team will be overseeing all instruction. We are hiring Computer Science and Engineering students, mainly from Imperial College, to be Student Instructors to lead the small (usually 8 student) camper teams during the sessions. They will all be trained, in person, by the Fire Tech Team in our curricula and policies.
Kids arrive between 8.30 and 9.15 – start the day with a warm-up activity and then start working on their projects.
Kids have a break for a snack in the morning,
More project work til lunch time - kids bring their own lunches.
Continue working in their small groups on individual projects in the afternoon. 60-90 minute break in the afternoon - games will be organised indoors or outdoors, depending on the weather. Special speakers or excursions may be planned!
Kids keep working on their projects until pick-up time.
In addition to the rooms where the coding sessions take place, we have break-out rooms for snacks and indoor activities, and a dedicated lunch area for Fire Tech Camp.
Kids should bring headphones and can bring smartphones to class if they want to take photos or videos as content for their projects, test their games or apps on their own device, and if they want us to help them load the game to the device (we will provide instructions for kids who prefer to do it themselves at home). They should also bring a packed lunch - we'll provide snacks but if your child has serious allergies they probably want to bring their own. We provide laptops for the classes for the younger students, but some of the teen-focused courses require a laptop, as we believe working on their own laptop and installing all the programmes there makes it more likely that they will be able to continue their work at home after the course. If you are signing up for a teen class and do not have a laptop for your student, we can provide one although there is additional fee for us to rent that for you.
In the summer, many of our classes run from 9 am to 5 pm. Parents are welcome to pick kids up at any time that is convenient to them - we will ask you each morning what time you plan to pick them up so that we know if you are planning to come before 5 pm. We have planned the camp with a longer day so that working parents will not need to arrange additional child-care. We also find that the kids are quite happy to work on their core projects, plus their websites, Makey Makeys and other circuitry experiments, and other activities available to them throughout the afternoon. (In fact, the challenge is getting them to shut things down!) As the children's work is in most cases quite independent and the tuition is more or less one-on-one, it isn't a problem if you prefer that your child leave earlier in the day. Just let us know!
We do have shorter formats during half-terms, and the teen courses also tend to be shorter hours (10 am to 3 pm) as we find that's usually a more suitable rhythm for them and their work.
All of the courses are designed with a particular age range in mind and when we have enough demand for more than one tutor for a topic, we are able to split the group into narrow ages. Usually the age span in a specific tutor's group is no more than 2-3 years.
It is very important to us that all of the campers have the opportunity to have fun and to get the most out of Fire Tech Camp. Of course we know that kids can be playful and we want this to be a fun environment, very different from school. We will do our best to engage kids who may find their attention wandering, who may be less keen on one particular activity, or who are due for a runaround outside.
We cannot, however, permit kids to disrupt the camp experience for other kids. Tutors will first let the disruptive child know that their behaviour is not appropriate, and that it is hindering other kids from enjoying the programme. If the problem persists it will escalate to the camp director, who will decide whether we need to call the parents. Children who are destructive with our equipment or setting, or who prevent other kids from benefitting from the camp will be suspended or expelled from the programme. Of course we would hate to have to do that, but it is important that we provide all of our campers and their families with a productive and safe environment.
We are recruiting computer science and engineering students from Imperial College and other universities to work with the kids on their projects as Student Instructors. They will go through 1-2 days of in-person training in the curriculum and in the pedagogy of teaching technology to kids. The student instructors will be supported in the camp sessions by our Head of Curricula Development and Training, who will lead the training team and supervise all instruction.
During camp registration, parents will indicate who is authorised to pick up the children. That person will need to show ID to sign the children out. Parents can modify the authorised person if necessary by getting in touch with Fire Tech Camps.
We will have approximately eight students per instructor.
There will be a First Aid trained staff member in attendance at every camp session.
Parents will have an opportunity to see their children’s projects and get to know their instructors on Friday afternoons, at the Grand Finale - details will be available in the information pack you will receive prior to coming to camp.
We don’t want any child to be limited by their economic circumstances and we are raising corporate sponsorship that will enable us to offer a limited number of scholarships. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to apply for a scholarship. More information on our scholarship program can be found here.
Not for summer 2013 but in the works for summer 2014!
Unfortunately we cannot provide refunds, as we book classes and venues on a custom basis. However, we are able to give you credit for a different course or date, if you cancel with six weeks advance notice.
In the unlikely event that Fire Tech Camp cancelled a course, we would offer refunds.