Kitronik, one of the UK’s leading creators of electronics projects and BBC micro:bit accessories for educators and makers, is pleased to announce that its products will now be available in Canada following a deal with Canadian company Fair Chance Learning.
The deal will see Fair Chance Learning, a leading Canadian professional learning provider for educators, distribute Kitronik’s BBC micro:bit related products and teaching resources throughout Canada.
Kitronik was one of the original partner organisations involved in the BBC micro:bit project when it launched in 2015. It now works with the micro:bit Educational Foundation to distribute the pocket-sized coding device to code clubs, schools and third sector organisations around the world. Over the last three years, the firm has developed a range of BBC micro:bit accessories and teaching resources to help teachers deliver innovative and engaging lessons using the device.
The distribution agreement will enable the team at Fair Chance Learning to benefit from the Nottingham company’s considerable experience with the development of the micro:bit and the numerous, products and teacher support materials they have subsequently created to ensure its effective use in schools.
It is this expertise that Fair Chance Learning are keen utilise in Canada to help the company deliver learning programmes using the BBC micro:bit, as Dustin Jez, co-founder explains: “The beauty of the BBC micro:bit is its connectivity and its potential for use across all STEM subject areas. It enables students to take coding away from a screen and use the device to make another device perform a function and this is an excellent way of inspiring young people to become interested in coding and digital skills.
“Kitronik’s range of BBC micro:bit products and learning resources that it has developed since 2015 have been designed to do that. Whether it is using the device to power a buggy and control it via a smartphone app, or using it to control servos and motors for use in robotics, it is this expertise that we are delighted to make available in Canada.”
The agreement will see Fair Chance Learning importing and distributing not just the micro:bit accessories but also a large number of micro:bit teaching resources. Top of the Canadian team’s shopping list is the Inventor’s Kit which will enable students to learn how to build circuits to perform useful functions and learn how to code the micro:bit to control and process input from those circuits. Other products to be distributed include the popular ‘:move mini’ buggy kit and its add-ons the tipper, bulldozer and bumper kits.
Fair Chance Learning, is a preferred Microsoft Educational Learning Partner and is authorised to deliver official Microsoft certifications, courses and learning services designed to provide educators with the tools and learning experiences which will inspire and empower them to deliver an inspiring STEM education programme.
Fair Chance Learning’s mission to get students coding and actively engaged in designing products, writing programmes and being active creators rather than just end users of technology, fits perfectly with Kitronik’s own ethos based on wanting to make the fun of electronics and related knowledge and skills accessible to young people.
Kitronik co-founder and director Kevin Spurr comments: “Our agreement with Fair Chance Learning fits perfectly with the global need to create more electronics engineers. We are privileged to support the greater emphasis on computing, coding and electronics which we are now seeing. From our work with teachers, trainers and students, we can see the interest shown by young people in building their own devices, and coding. With our products helping to develop this passion, we are hopeful that we are lowering barriers to technology invention for young people, makers and developers globally.”
With thousands of young people across the world benefitting from Kitronik’s expertise as a result of the firm’s expansion into overseas markets, growth in non-domestic markets is now beginning to outperform those in the domestic market with 51 per cent of sales coming from overseas. This figure is set to increase following the deal with Fair Chance Learning.