Me with Sue (left)

Collaborative, fun and deceptively simple – that’s the power of #techmums

I’ve had a nice time over the past few weeks delivering not one but two #techmums programmes. The #techmums course is made up of five modules: Google Apps (Gmail, Google Drive and Google Docs), app design, web design, social media and coding (Python). The ethos and approach is simple: have a go, enjoy yourself, don’t worry if you don’t know everything (none of us do).

I first met #techmums founder Dr Sue Black (above left) ten years ago at a Google Women in Tech event – we got chatting and became friends. Since then, Sue has saved Bletchley Park, written a bestselling book and become an OBE. But she still remains the same warm, funny, down-to-earth person – now committed to doing whatever she can to share her success with others and open up technology to everyone – especially women who may lack confidence because they’ve taken time out of work to raise children.

So it was great to finally get the chance to work with Sue delivering these two #techmums courses (the format uses two tutors as you can support and bounce off each other). One course was for mums in Tower Hamlets – at Bishop Challoner, the secondary school that ran the very first pilot back in 2013. And the other was for a new team of #techmums trainers in Maldon, Essex. This one was particularly exciting as it’s part of a new initiative from Essex County Council to roll out #techmums courses to adult learners across the county.

Both courses have been a pleasure to deliver. Not only because I’ve learnt a lot myself while teaching (because the ethos is on collaboration, discovery and sharing, you listen as much as you talk) but because the atmosphere in the classroom is so positive. People get behind the #techmums concept very quickly – it does what it says on the tin. And with so much emphasis now on UK school children learning code, an army of enthusiastic #techmums is the best support we can give them!

Photos: (top) new #techmums graduates at Bishop Challoner Catholic Secondary School; (bottom) tweeting with #techmums trainers in Maldon, Essex

Techmums at Bishop Challoner

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