Make a #RaspberryJam

Consider setting up a RaspberryJam in your area and send an email to alan[at]odonohoe[dot]org[dot]uk with the subject line ‘RaspberryJam’. There really isn’t a lot of organisation involved. Other groups are setting up their own and amazing things are happening as a result. We have lots of things we can offer/do to help you get one started near you. As well as contacting us, please post a notice in the official Raspberry Pi Forums events section so you can connect with other interested people.

Essential Ingredients There are really only two minimum requirements you need for your  RaspberryJam; some people to turn up and a large enough space to accomodate them. We can help you to promote your event through our site, the eventbrite site, twitter and our links with people in your area as well as creating your own logo. Once your event is gathering interest, we will create a webpage you can link all your event details and activities to. We will also put you in touch with some speakers that could attend your event.

Desirable Ingredients TV screens with HDMI input, if these are not available, ask some of your guests if they have one they can bring. A data projector and wall/screen for talks (with necessary cables/convertors). Sticky labels for guests to write name and twitter/email details on. Post-it notes and paper for guests to write answers on, eg. “What do you hope to get from this event?, “What are you hoping to do with your Raspberry Pi?” and many more questions. Ask people to put their names on the Post-its. Refreshments are not entirely necessary but encourage people to relax and stay longer.

Activities for your #RaspberryJam

Here are some activities you can plan for your RaspberryJam event. The key thing is to get your guests to provide the content, which frees the event organiser up to organise the content providers into an order. A really successful event will achieve a careful balance between all of these activities.

Talk Some of your guests would love an opportunity to talk about something they wish to share. It may be an idea they are developing, or a project that they recently completed. Try to restrict each speaker to around 10 – 20 minutes.

Hands-on Try to build in some hand-on activities for your guests to experience first hand what they can actually do with a Raspberry Pi. While it’s great to listen to an inspiring speaker, a hands-on experience offers something different.

Demo Some of your guests will have brought along projects with them, but will be very shy about speaking to a large audience. Planning some demonstration areas allows them to share their projects with others. If you have many demonstrators, you may need to schedule a timetable.

Big Idea Some of your guests will come along because they seek help from a large audience with a problem they to ask if an idea they have will work.

Support Some guests will be coming along because they are stuck and really need some help.

Market Place You may encourage people to bring items along that they want to swap, give away or sell to others. This could include cases, peripherals and SD cards. You may encourage an SD Swap Shop where guests can bring a blank SD card and swap it for one with a pre-loaded image.

Venue Suggestions You can really use any space from your kitchen, local cafe to a school, hotel or university. A great venue really adds a lot of value to your event. Schools are particularly suitable since it encourages children and families to attend and they will often provide their facilities for free. Hotels can charge very high conference-room rates which are difficult to finance. There are also community spaces like Hackspaces, Scout huts etc. It’s worth trying to be adventurous when choosing a venue, look at this and this photo of the Bristol RaspberryJam venue.

2 thoughts on “Make a #RaspberryJam

  1. Pingback: Shortlisted for NAACE Secondary Impact Award « Teach Computing

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