Welcome to #exabytes!


The single biggest event in our annual calendar, #exabytes is a fantastic event designed to give teachers the chance to develop their understanding of Computing, get better results by effectively using technology in and around the classroom, network with peers, and a whole lot more.

We've recently wrapped up another great year with #exabytes18, our third annual conference for teachers - take a look through the show with the video above! On this page, we've put together some information about the conference, including info about the fantastic sessions (and links to some key resources).


With over 20 fantastic sessions having taken place at #exabytes18, we worked to ensure that the conference really had something for everyone. Below, we've put together information on all #exabytes18 sessions - click through for an in-depth look at what's covered, and who's leading the session. Sessions in italics have resources linked.

Timeslot French Ballroom Forster Suite Wyvern Room Pullman Room Midland Room
Bit 0
9:00 - 10:00
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Bit 1
10:00 - 10:40
Bit 2
11:00 - 11:40
12:00 - 13:00

Lunch Break

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Bit 3
13:00 - 13:40
Bit 4
14:00 - 14:40
Bit 5
15:00 - 15:40
Bit 6
16:00 - 16:30
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All Ages:



Keynote - Introducing #exabytes18!

We're starting off #exabytes18 this year with two fantastic keynote sessions. Firstly, Kersten England will introduce #exabytes18, discussing the importance of Computer Science across communities like Bradford. Following this, Miles Berry will take a look at the wide range of block-based coding languages available to use, and explores ways to move beyond Scratch, exploring ways to use block languages to develop student confidence and understanding at all levels.

Slides from Miles' #exabytes18 presentation

Chief executive of Bradford Council, Kersten England has been a long-time major fixture of the local community, and has driven a huge amount of tech engagement across the city, helping promote and support a number of great local initiatives.

As leader for Computing Education at the University of Roehampton, Miles Berry has helped introduce a huge number of teachers to Computing, while also helping create the national curriculum, train CAS Master Teachers - and far more.

Making a Difference

In this great keynote session, Phil Bagge will be exploring some of the most effective strategies and approaches he's found for engaging students with Computing over the years, giving real, practical insights to help develop your approach to the classroom.

Slides from Phil's first #exabytes18 session

Returning after a fantastic keynote session at #exabytes17 last year, Phil Bagge will be running a keynote and a secondary session at #exabytes18. As a CAS Master Teacher and creator of a number of key educational resources, Phil has made a real difference for Computing teachers across the country.

Automating with Add-Ons in G-Suite

The free collection of G-Suite apps can benefit schools, teachers and students in a number of ways. However, by using and building various add-ons, users can bring in a lot of additional functions, with creating the add-ons making for a great text-based programming project.

As a Raspberry Pi and Google for Education certified educator/ trainer, Graham Bowman has a lot of genuinely insightful advice and suggestions for guests at #exabytes18, getting to grips with how to effectively use free software in the classroom.

Adding Accessories to the micro:bit

As a low-cost, highly customisable piece of equipment, the micro:bit is a popular and effective tool for introducing and developing students' understanding of Computing. By adding various accessories (including pre-made and homemade ones), the micro:bit can become an even more effective piece of equipment - find out more in this session!

Teacher, CAS coordinator, Raspberry Pi-trained, and one of the micro:bit's most prolific creators, Lorraine Underwood has a huge amount of tried and tested expertise and experience to share at #exabytes18, with her session set to be a great exploration of micro:bit modifications.

Introduction to Sonic Pi

Sonic Pi is a fantastic bit of software which lets users put together music via text-based coding, making for a genuinely engaging project with real-world results, which can also be of major interest for SEND students. This session introduces Sonic Pi, giving teachers a look at how to incorporate it in their classroom schedules.

As an eLearning consultant and SEND lead at Sheffield Council, Catherine Elliott works to help schools develop the effective use of technology in and around the classroom, while creating strategies designed to include all students.

Accessibility in e-Assessment

If you're using any kind of e-Assessment, it's important to be able to accommodate for all requirements - this session is set to explore a few new ways and approaches designed to help make e-Assessment more accessible than ever for all learners.

Creators of a number of effective e-Assessment options for schools, BTL Group's Surpass software is used in a huge range of schools across the world.

Smelly Code

When learning how to code, it's possible for a lot of bad habits to be baked in - which makes it vital for students to understand how to make quality code from the start. This session will be exploring ways to best teach positive programming habits while still engaging learners.

A major part of CAS, and provider of fantastic CPD for Primary-level teachers (all while researching a PHD on the most effective approaches for Computing and Computational Thinking), Jane is an engaging and exciting presenter, with her session sure to be a great choice for #exabytes18 guests.

Programming Projects Progression using the Crumble

The Crumble controller opens the doors to a huge range of projects for Digital Makers. In a second great #exabytes18 session, Phil Bagge will explore some of the incredible, low-cost projects that can be created by using the Crumble controller, covering a huge range of ground for Primary students.

Slides from Programming Projects Progression

Returning after a fantastic keynote session at #exabytes17 last year, Phil Bagge will be running a keynote and a secondary session at #exabytes18. As a CAS Master Teacher and creator of a number of key educational resources, Phil has made a real difference for Computing teachers across the country.

Getting Started with PyGame

Using the highly-learnable Python programming language, PyGame lets users easily create games - a fun, engaging project for young learners. Head over to this session for an introduction to using PyGame in the classroom to interest learners and develop their understanding.

An introduction to using PyGame

Teacher, Computing resource creator, and Raspberry Pi-trained educator, Dan Aldred has put together a huge amount of genuinely useful tools and options for Computer Science teachers, particularly focusing on Raspberry Pi.

Coding and Printing 3D Shapes with BeetleBlocks

A specialised, block-based coding language, BeetleBlocks is designed to make it easy for users to create shapes for 3D printing. At this session, Carl will be introducing guests to the language, and exploring the best ways to implement it in your classroom (or as an activity for coding clubs).

As senior lecturer at Edge Hill University, an experienced teacher, and an advocate of improving the teaching of Computing in schools, Carl Simmons has worked to support a huge number of teachers all over the country, running some great CPD sessions, along with great presentations like his one at #exabytes18!

Blockbuster on a Budget

Putting together videos can be a fun, engaging project for classes. In this session, Philip will take a look at some free/ low-cost ways to make these videos even more engaging, adding in a range of high-quality visual effects by effectively using AR, premade assets and greenscreen techniques.

Working to help students get more to grips with Computing, Philip has made some great use of AR and VR resources, giving students a look at real-world Computing in an accessible, budget-friendly way. Presenting a session and part of our final plenary at #exabytes18, Philip's set to share some fantastic resources and possibilities for teachers.

Script to Screen STEM Roles

Often, when students think about Computing-related jobs, they imagine the stereotypical movie hacker, sitting behind a green-glowing screen. There's a lot more to Computing-related roles than that, as this presentation explores, taking a look at how Computing and other STEM subjects come together to create films and TV, from special effects to set design and more.

Representing the Emmerdale Experience, Lead Education Facilitator Jessie Harris works to introduce students to the wide range of work going on behind the scenes of Emmerdale, with her presentation set to be of real interest for visitors at #exabytes18.

Cyber Security Games and Resources

Following some great sessions at last year's #exabytes17, Jason returns for a session introducing teachers to some fantastic games, resources and exercises created by the Cyber Security Challenge as a way to help get young learners interested in cybersecurity outside of the classroom.

As schools programme manager at the Cyber Security Challenge (and a former Computer Science teacher), Jason works to help schools create more effective approaches to cybersecurity. Right now, Cyber Security Challenge are running the completely free-to-enter Matrix Challenge, a great opportunity for students to develop their understanding of cybersecurity (and win prizes!)

Data Logging with micro:bits

When carrying out experiments in class, it's important to have a way to accurately log data. With the right approach, micro:bit units can be turned into highly effective data loggers, with this session taking a look at how MicroPython can be used to create an effective program for data capture and logging in a number of different ways.

Computer Science teacher and contributor to the KS3 Curriculum, Jon's helped an incredible number of students and teachers develop their understanding and confidence when it comes to Computing.

Teaching Robotics

With immediately apparent real-world effects, robotics can be a great way to engage Primary students, getting them to think about the real-world nature of Computing rather than just considering coding languages. This session will explore some great ways to introduce robotics for Primary classes, looking at micro:bits, Crumble controllers and more.

CAS Master Teacher and major fan of robotics, Nicholas has helped create engaging and effective lesson plans, project ideas and a whole lot more to help boost the profile of robotics (and Computing as a whole) across schools.

Makerspaces and Co-Curricular Clubs

Computer Science is one of those subjects where there tends to be a significant spread in student interests and abilities. As such, running Computing clubs and makerspaces can help support more advanced students, while helping others find and develop their interests outside the classroom - find out about some great approaches to running clubs, competitions and more within your school.

Head of Computer Science at Bradford Grammar School, as well as CAS hub leader for Bradford, Christine is a major voice when it comes to supporting and developing the teaching of Computing in schools.

Computing on a Shoestring

With budgets increasingly stretched, it's often hard for teachers to put together interesting and engaging Computing projects for students. In this session, Christine takes a look at some fantastic low-cost/ free projects that can engage students without creating an issue for budgets.

Slides and Resources for Computing on a Shoestring

Building from her past work as a Computer Science teacher, Christine works to train teachers at Birmingham City University, supporting the next generation of Computing teachers, while working heavily to improve the state of gender diversity across STEM subjects.

Bluffer's Guide to Functional Programming

Functional Programming gives students the techniques and approaches needed to effectively process and use Big Data - in this session, Mark will be introducing #exabytes18 guests to ways to effectively understand and teach functional programming in their classes.

Head of Computer Science, creator of a huge number of free Computing resources for teachers and expert CPD provider, Mark's expert experience is set to make his session at #exabytes18 a great choice for Secondary teachers.

Using micro:bits and Bit:Bots

A great way to develop the abilities of micro:bit beyond the standard, Bit:Bots let users add in some great Physical Computing features like buzzers, motors, neopixels and more. Head over to this session for an introduction to some of these great features, designed to make micro:bits more effective for Secondary students.

Head of Computing, CAS hub organiser and Digital Leaders advocate, Chris is rated as an outstanding teacher (courtesy of Ofsted), and provides some fantastic Computing CPD for teachers across the country.

Be inspired with the Crumble Controller

With Crumble controllers, it's possible to make some fantastic practical projects, and this session will take guests through ways to incorporate making Crumble projects like lightsabres and robotic vehicles into their classroom activities - a great way to develop student interest and flexibility.

As a Primary teacher, certified Raspberry Pi instructor and CAS Master Teacher, Helen's set to deliver a truly excellent workshop at this year's #exabytes18, exploring classroom-tested Crumble projects and possibilities.

Online Safety Round Table

Keeping students safe online is a key part of work for all teachers, with Computing specialists being particularly important in developing an effective approach to online safety. In this session, you'll be able to discuss and get feedback from a number of e-safety professionals.

Bradford-based CAS Master Teacher Matt has done some fantastic work with exa.foundation before, while creating some fantastic Digital Making projects for his class and other schools. In this session, Matt will be joined by a number of other teachers for a great discussion on approaches to online safety.

Escape the Classroom

Incredibly popular with students, escape rooms challenge guests to develop lateral thinking, solving challenging puzzles. There's a lot of ways in which escape room design can be adapted for Computing lessons, creating fun lessons that actively engage students - find out how to introduce an all-new approach in this great session!

Self-taught programmer, digital skills trainer, and a whole lot more, Claire is a truly inventive educator, with her work often covering exciting new areas - like the escape room ideas her #exabytes18 session is set to cover!

Computers Explained Through Storytelling

Storytelling can be a fantastic way to introduce Primary students to complicated ideas and topics, with Computing being no exception. In this session, discover some great ways to introduce Computing concepts via stories (and some fun class activities to back them up).

Computing coordinator, teacher and tech meetup organiser in Milton Keynes, Sway has made a real impact on the local state of Computing, and has been a great part of #exabytes since our very first conference.

Physical Computing with the micro:bit and Mu

A code editor specifically designed for beginner programmers, Mu makes it a lot easier for students to put together Physical Computing projects, particularly in combination with micro:bit units. In this session, find out how to combine micro:bits with Mu to create engaging projects and explore programming concepts like selection and iteration.

CAS Hub Leader and Computing teacher, Rachael has hugely raised the profile of Computing across Bradford and Wakefield, working with students and other teachers across Yorkshire to create effective lesson plans and projects.

Traffic Lights in Minecraft with EduBlocks

This interesting session combines a number of interesting areas for lessons - using Python code and EduBlocks (a great Physical Computing tool), students can build experiments (like a set of traffic lights) in both real life and Minecraft, combining code and Physical Computing to see results in both, developing their understanding of the subject.

Raspberry Pi and CAS certified teacher of Computer Science, Beth ran a fantastic session exploring Physical Computing and Raspberry Pi at #exabytes17 last year, with her presentation this time around building on some of the ground covered there, for an even more engaging session.

Google Classroom

A completely free suite of apps for schools, Google Classroom is designed to help simplify marking and assessment for teachers - this session gives guests a hands-on look at how to go about making the best use of Google Classroom, with in-depth looks at some key features.

As a CAS hub leader, certified Google for Education trainer and local authority ICT consultant, Rob works to give teachers around the country a better level of access to/ understanding of how to get the best from tech in their classrooms.

Plenary Session

We close out #exabytes18 with a plenary from exa.foundation leader Alan O'Donohoe and Philip Nottingham, one of the fantastic presenters at our conference this year. Ending the day with a bang, this session points recaps some of the great sessions taking place at #exabytes18, and looks forward to everything coming up over the next year, from exa.foundation events to next year's #exabytes19.