Over 100,000 schools and students are learning to code with Rapid Router

Code for Life, a voluntary-based initiative launched by the Ocado Foundation to support the new primary school computer science curriculum, is announcing that it has set a new record for the number of students using Rapid Router, the free and open source game developed by Ocado Technology together with specialist ICT and computer science teachers.

Over 100,000 students, teachers and even parents now regularly use the Code for Life primary school resources that help users understand the basics of computer programming and Python.

The news comes as the biggest ever update to the Code for Life portal is launched. From today, Code for Life users will enjoy a new and improved user experience which will make computer programming even easier and more fun to learn.

The new website has been developed by Ocado Technology, after extensive user research and testing with students and teachers in the UK. The significant update involved over 2000 hours of development time from the Code for Life team and Ocado Technology volunteers, and features:

  • A refreshed homepage that provides helpful information to users and contributors,  clearly directing students and teachers alike to their respective interest areas.

  • Improved access to teacher resources, including documentation and videos embedded in a web viewer on each page to ease the navigation between related teaching materials.

  • A streamlined registration process, including a step-by-step guide for user onboarding; teachers can also better manage their classes and invite colleagues from the same school.

  • The teachers’ only Solution Loader: a new button on the menu allows teachers to quickly load a solution for every Rapid Router level.

  • Improved responsiveness and a better UI for users accessing the Code for Life website and resources on mobile devices.

  • A new logo to better reflect the Code for Life mission and vision.

  • An official Crowdin profile for contributors looking to translate the free resources into other languages, including French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Catalan, Polish …and Klingon!

Paul Clarke, Ocado CTO: “Ocado’s success story as the world’s largest online-only supermarket stems from developing most of its cutting edge technology in-house. However, we face a widening skills gap between the number of jobs available in the technology sector and the people qualified to fill them. Often enough, the problem starts early in our education system: many teachers don’t have the resources needed to teach computing to young students, particularly when starting from scratch. The refreshed Code for Life website and teaching materials have been designed in collaboration with ICT and computer science teachers to fit the needs of anyone teaching computing to primary school students. We’re very proud that more than 100,000 users in the UK and around the world are using Rapid Router to learn the basics of programming and Python.

Code for Life is one of several charitable initiatives focused on education pioneered by the Ocado Foundation. The aim is to help primary school teachers give every child the coding skills needed in an increasingly digital-oriented world.

Celine Boudier, Code for Life product owner and team leader: “We believe data proficiency and the ability to code will soon become as important as literacy and maths are today. With that in mind, we developed the Code for Life initiative to give something back to the education system that has shaped so many of our amazing developers and engineers. We are keen to develop a programme and resources that enable children to develop their STEM skills and data literacy abilities starting at the primary school levels all the way to university.”

The Code for Life resources include a fun coding game called Rapid Router featuring more than 100 levels that help teach children the principles of programming. Students can also build their own challenges and teachers have access to extensive documentation, including full lessons plans, classroom activities and tutorial videos. Code for Life users can also access a series of videos where various computer programmers explain how they use coding in their careers.

To find out more about Rapid Router and the Code for Life initiative, please visit https://codeforlife.education.

About the Ocado Foundation
The Ocado Foundation was established in April 2015 with the aim of helping Ocado employees and customers make a difference across the UK. We choose projects and charities where our input will be the most valuable and our impact the greatest. Our charitable initiatives cover the environment, education and entrepreneurship, and eating well.

About Code for Life
The Code for Life initiative has been created by Ocado Technology to get every child coding. As the world’s largest online-only supermarket, Ocado understands the importance of cultivating the next generation of computer scientists. Just as Ocado’s technology has revolutionized the way people buy groceries, Code for Life will help equip pupils with the skills needed to revolutionize the industries of tomorrow. For more information about Code for Life, visit http://codeforlife.education

About Ocado
Established in 2000, Ocado is a UK-based company admitted to trading on the London Stock Exchange (OCDO), and is the world’s largest dedicated online grocery retailer, operating its own grocery and general merchandise retail businesses under the Ocado.com and other specialist shop banners. For more information about the Ocado Group, visit www.ocadogroup.com

george smith