About

What is Jr. FCHacks?

Traditionally hackathons focus on high school students. Elementary students have little or no opportunity to learn coding skills or compete in such events. FCHacks Jr. is a hackathon designed specifically to introduce coding to students in younger grades. While the general concept of hackathons (designing a solution to a problem or challenge presented) will be maintained, the duration, focus and rubrics will vary to fit the age of the participants. Students may work individually or in groups of two or three.

When will it be?

Jr. FCHacks will be on February 27, 2021 from 2-6pm EST. Students will be given ~4-5 hours to work on their projects. Note that all times are for the Eastern US and Canada timezone (EST) unless otherwise noted.

About Jr. FCHacks 2021

Due to current circumstances, FCHacks has decided to move to a virtual competition. This event will be ~4-5 hours and will take place largely via Zoom (or similar). This hackathon is geared towards primary school students (grades 1-6). Students may work in small groups or individually. Parental assistance is allowed and encouraged. Students do not need any prior programming experience - we target beginners and advanced programmers. We will be mainly using (and teaching) Scratch during the competition, but students are open to use other languages. Students will be submitting their code and a video if necessary, which will then be evaluated by judges.

Objective

You will be developing a computer application that will be centered around a given theme.


Competition Release

The theme/topic will be released at the start of the competition.

2020 Projects and Recordings

(High School) Project showcase can be found at http://showcase.fchacks.org/. You can also find the stream recordings on YouTube.

FAQ

What generally happens at a hackathon?

During a hackathon, participants ("hackers") work in teams of up to 4 to build projects ("hacks") from scratch. These projects can be pretty much anything—apps, games, robots, websites, or anything else you can dream up! Keep in mind that your project has to fit within a certain theme.

Do I need to have a team or an idea?

Not at all! You're welcome to start brainstorming or forming a team ahead of time, but this is certainly not required—we'll have dedicated time at the event for you to find a team and come up with an idea.

What can I win?

We'll have several prizes at the event, including overall prizes (1st, 2nd, 3rd).

Who can attend?

Jr. FCHacks is open to all elementary school students (and 6th graders). If you're younger, email us and we'll see what we can do. If you're older (High School and older), please consider registering as a mentor or volunteer instead.

How much does it cost to attend?

Absolutely nothing! FCHacks is completely free to attend.

What resources will be available for me?

We'll have mentors available to help you with various aspects of your projec as well as optional workshops centered around specific topics, like pitching your project to the judges.

What if I've never coded before?

No problem! One of our main goals is to provide an opportunity for students with little exposure to computer science to see how fun and powerful it can be. If you're a beginner, we'll have intensive introductory workshops teaching you how to code something from scratch.

What kinds of projects can I make?

You can make anything you like. When brainstorming, we recommend thinking of problems that many people face, or some practical application of technology. It’s a good idea to work in an area that you are familiar with, but don’t be afraid to push your boundaries! For some project samples, check out 2020 Mini-FCHacks showcase.

What technology can I use?

For the virtual competition, feel free to use any hardware that you want. This can range from arduinos or Raspberry Pis to EV3s. You can use any sensor electronic component that you have. The minimum you need to compete is a computer, laptop, or smart device with access to the internet.

What if I don’t have a team?

No worries! You will get a chance to pair up with other competitors who do not have a team. Also, you can be a one person team.

Have a question we didn't cover here?

Email us at team@fchacks.org and we promise we'll get back to you soon!

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