ICYMI MakeCode Newsletter: Black Girls Code Virtual Camps #MakeCode @MSMakeCode @Adafruit

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The MakeCode Newsletter


This is a newsletter devoted to Microsoft MakeCode, the easy but powerful block and Javascript code creator. We include MakeCode news, highlights, information, happenings, hardware, and more from around the globe, so you can keep up with the latest happenings in the MakeCode-iverse!

If you’d like to receive this newsletter via email early each month, sign up here.

Missed a previous issue? No worries, you can check out the archive right here!

Black Girls Code Virtual Summer Camps

Black Girls Code Virtual Summer Camps

Black Girls CODE is excited to announce their virtual Summer Camps in 2020, to be held from July 6 – July 31, 2020.

They state: “We made the difficult decision to cancel the popular Black Girls CODE in-person summer camp season and quickly went to work to create an exciting schedule of virtual camp experiences.”

More information – Black Girls Code.

Cori Murray provides a testimonial: “Thank you Black Girls Code for my little one’s class this morning. She’s very proud of the game she made. Check out what I made with MakeCode!Twitter.

Education Spotlight

Microsoft Build

The Microsoft Build conference talk: Inspiring Next Gen Coders with MakeCode – Microsoft.

GitHub Classroom

Microsoft and GitHub announce that they are making online integrated development environments (IDEs) such that students can get right to work in a web browser, avoiding software conflicts that might happen with code installs on their local machines.

Code on a laptop or with a tablet—students won’t be slowed down by their devices. Students can get started quickly in the same coding environment, so educators may teach instead of troubleshooting.

Currently integration includes MakeCode Arcade – GitHub.

MakeCode in OneNote

Displaying your students MakeCode in OneNote has never been easier. Learn how to take coding from Minecraft and embed it into your OneNote – Twitter and YouTube.

Microsoft MakeCode Live Streaming and Resources for Students and Educators

The MakeCode team posts “To help families affected by school closures, the Microsoft MakeCode team will start live streaming coding lessons next for micro:bit, MakeCode Arcade and Minecraft. They are also providing online tutorials and project along with educator resources. See the MakeCode Online Learning page to see all these resources and for the latest streaming schedule. – Twitter.

The Microsoft MakeCode YouTube Channel has recordings of livestreams – YouTube.

Microsoft Digital All-Stars

Code your own game with Davon Godchaux of the Miami Dolphins – Mixer.

MakeCode in the Kitchen

MakeCode in the Kitchen series from Microsoft for kids at home – Mixer – last week and YouTube Playlist.

MakeCode Live with John Park

MakeCode Live with John Park series – YouTube Playlist.

MakeCode Minute

MakeCode Minute

Use lists to clear sprites in this Animal Crossing DIY recipe book proof of concept – YouTube.

Check out all the MakeCode minute videos on YouTube.

MakeCode Arcade Game of the Week!

Game of the Week

Catch the Apple by Sirbull is a punny crab + apple catching game! YouTube

Check out all the MakeCode Arcade game of the week videos on YouTube.

News from around the web!

MakeCode Bluetooth to Adafruit CLUE

Using Bluetooth to talk between a micro:bit and CLUE board in MakeCode and CircuitPython respectively – Twitter, CircuitPython Code and MakeCode.

MakeCode Class

Waris Candra posts: “Starting our “new normal (with distancing/masks/sanitizer, et cetera). Feeling Energised with micro:bit, code.org, and MakeCode on a thunderstorm/Red Rain & Alert Saturday 9.30am! Amazing commitment from parents and students!” – Twitter.

MakeCode and Circuit Playground Express

Getting a Circuit Playground Express from Adafruit for my 10 year olds birthday. Within 5 minutes of him opening it (he was) using MakeCode to create his own program! “I made that! It’s really easy for coding actually.” – Twitter.

MakeCode Emoji

Ivan posts: “Thinking outside the box in MakeCode for micro:bit. My son is too young for MakeCode so I made him this simple coding project. Unicode emoji characters are an excellent way to simplify content for younger audiences” – Twitter.

Retro TV MakeCode Arcade

A retro TV MakeCode Arcade machine using a Raspberry Pi Zero – hackster.io.

Make your own processor

Make your own programmable processor (CPU) with a micro:bit and MakeCode – BlogMyWiki.

#ICYDNCI What was the most popular, most clicked link, in last month’s newsletter? Careers at Microsoft.

Microsoft is hiring for the MakeCode Team

Microsoft is Hiring

Microsoft is a major employer and recently announced they have openings in the MakeCode Team. See their Job Listings for the positions open – Twitter.

Coming Soon

Beta Testers

Beta testing helps us improve micro:bit by trying out new software before it’s more widely released. Become a micro:bit beta tester and try out the latest MakeCode before it’s released – Twitter and microbit.

Guides using MakeCode

Check out all the MakeCode guides on learn.adafruit.com.

New Hardware!


GameGo – a handheld console with which one can code their own games with MakeCode – TinkerGen.


The GiggleBot is a robot powered by the micro:bit that is for the classroom, makerspace, or a remote learning environment. The GiggleBot can be programmed using Microsoft’s MakeCode environment, which is the primary platform for the micro:bit. This provides a platform for block coding as well as Javascript and the GiggleBot can also be programmed in Python! – Eduporium and YouTube.

Crazy Circuits

Brown Dog Gadgets announces “Another test of our prototype Crazy Circuits micro:bit board. We built a relay into it for controlling simple DC motors and objects. You might say we’re big fans of relays.” – Twitter.

Resources for Educators and more!

If we missed any resources, please let us know on GitHub, we’ll be updating this list each newsletter.

Join the MakeCode Discussions on Discord


The Adafruit Discord community has a dedicated #makecode channel to discuss all things MakeCode, seek advice, etc. – Join us now.

What is Microsoft MakeCode?

MakeCode Overview Video

Microsoft MakeCode is a free, open source platform for creating engaging computer science learning experiences that support a progression path into real-world programming – YouTube.



An interactive simulator provides students with immediate feedback on how their program is running and makes it easy to test and debug their code.

Block Editor

Block Editor

Students new to coding can start with colored blocks that they can drag and drop onto their workspace to construct their programs.

JavaScript Editor

JavaScript Editor

When they are ready, students can move into a full-featured JavaScript editor with code snippets, tooltips, and error detection to help them.

MakeCode Arcade

MakeCode Arcade

Microsoft MakeCode Arcade is a web-based beginner-friendly code editor to create retro arcade games for the web and for microcontrollers. In this guide, you will learn how to assemble your own Arcade hardware from different parts. MakeCode Arcade is open source, and on GitHub.

MakeCode Arcade Overview Video

Microsoft has produced an excellent overview video of MakeCode Arcade – YouTube.


The MakeCode Newsletter is a community-run newsletter with support from Microsoft. The complete archives are here. Contributions are welcome! Please make pull request to modify the latest draft from inside the _drafts directory on GitHub.

Adafruit publishes a wide range of writing and video content, including interviews and reporting on the maker market and the wider technology world. Our standards page is intended as a guide to best practices that Adafruit uses, as well as an outline of the ethical standards Adafruit aspires to. While Adafruit is not an independent journalistic institution, Adafruit strives to be a fair, informative, and positive voice within the community – check it out here: adafruit.com/editorialstandards

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Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.

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