We have done a lot of work in the area of technology in our school.

We have had a Skype call with a software engineer based in Galway, who designs apps for the iPhone and we have learned about scratch and blogging.

These posts about our DPSMA are written and designed by the children in our school. They also take photos used for the blogs.



For the past few weeks we have gone to the computer room and learned all about Scratch with Mr Barry.

Scratch is an offline coding app where you can make your own stories using characters called sprites and backgrounds. You pick blocks and make your sprite move and make actions. You can also make it say things like “hello my name is ……. I can run fast”. You can also make it say noises like meow or woof.

You can pick from a number of backgrounds to fit your story, from a cliff to a bedroom. You can even make up your own backgrounds, using different colours and you can take pictures and load them into the computer.

Our class did a story on Scratch, where our sprite (a cat) ran through a dark woods and a bat jumped out and shouted boo!!!

We have had a brilliant time coding with Mr Barry and hope to continue it. We hope that you enjoy it as much as we have and suggest Scratch to people you know.

By Emmet Walsh and Charlie Curling

Room 8

Skype Call with a software engineer

On Tuesday April 17th 2018 room 18 had a skype interview with Vinny Coyne, a software engineer from J2 Global Galway.

Each person in our class got to ask one question, the list of questions is below.

We learned that it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to make apps. We found out that you need to have maths and science as subjects to be a developer and you can do a course in NUIG. We learned that you can use all different types of coding language to make apps, including swift and objective C. Vinny’s first app that he developed was called eirtext and it was based on sending texts. One of Vinny’s favourite apps to use is Strava because he likes running. He went to school and university in Galway. He has been to Silicon Valley in America, where Google Headquarters is. The most dangerous thing about his job is storing user information securly online and he reminded us to always be careful about what information we give online.

It was a great interview and we leaned lots about coding and software engineering.

Thanks Vinny!



1.       IS your job a difficult job? And why?

2.       What is your favourite app to use?

3.       What is your favourite app that you have developed?

4.       How did you feel when you developed your first app?

5.       Why did you want to become an app developer?

6.       What made you choose software?

7.       What other job would you like to have if you weren’t a software engineer?

8.       What school and university did you go to?

9.       Is binary coding hard to remember?

10.   How do you make apps?

  1. How do you make apps?
  2. How many hours a day do you work?
  3. What was the first app that you developed?
  4. What is the most dangerous thing about your job?
  5. Is your job a good job and do you make good money?
  6. What coding language do you use?
  7. How long have you been a developer?
  8. Where do you work?
  9. Where are you from?
  10. Have you ever been to Silicon Valley?


This year the class I am in began to use a program on Google called Lightbot which is a website that teaches the basics of coding. In Lightbot you use certain commands in order to move a robot called Lightbot. The main aim is to light up all the blue squares, each time you complete one of these challenges there is a completely new and different puzzle to solve after.

Sadly, all good things must come to an end as it is not an endless source of stimulating puzzles. The puzzles gradually become harder as you complete more and more. By the end of it you’ll have at least grasped the concept of coding.

 Along the way it introduces new commands for you to test on the little robot such as things called procedures. This is where the real challenge comes from when you have to use these procedures as the only option to complete the puzzle at hand.

At the beginning you are only using simple commands to move the Lightbot, but by the end of it you’re using complex commands to light up all of the squares. It’s a great website that can teach you the basics of coding. These sort of websites can lead to children wanting to pursue a career in software engineering or IT of some sort. Best of all it’s free!

Michael Room 16