On Friday the 29th of May, HSO launched PowerUp! for Kids – a one day course designed to teach children how to take charge of building their own app, using Microsoft Power Apps. Using their existing skills from programs like Excel and PowerPoint, the children became ‘Citizen Developers’ (someone who builds apps but doesn’t write the complex code).

Our aim was to give the children the tools and some curiosity about the Power Apps so that they could think up some new and wonderful ideas themselves!

The day started off around 10:30am with the marvellous Chris Huntingford from Microsoft joining the HSO team to deliver a fantastic and fun session for 100+ children. Full of excitement and enthusiasm, Chris explained what awesome tools are included in the Microsoft Power Platform, before showing the children what the Lego blocks of knowledge were, that they were about to level up on. Each child was provided their own HSO account and a raft of goodies such as fun images, written training guides and YouTube clips on how to complete the app. The HSO team and Chris were all on hand to help the children out when needed, but they were encouraged to follow the guidelines, at their own pace, knowing that myself (Julia Simpson), Ben Matthews, Syed Shah and Chris were there to support them if they came across any challenges over the sessions. The day was split across a morning and afternoon session, with the team on hand during the lunch break as well, to answer questions.

The afternoon session was kicked off with a recap of some of the awesome work that the children had been doing and how impressed we were with their skills! Chris then picked up the pace and started to explain how we could use our current blocks of knowledge to expand and create really important apps that could help change the world! He then showed the children how they could continue to level up their abilities and use AI Image processing to help identify superheroes in our midst! The day was wrapped up by letting everyone know how to use the app on their mobiles and how to download and keep the resources and applications they had built for future use!

The app that the children built was a scheduling app. Basically it’s a way of helping them plan out their day, from a list of parental approved activities, and then providing evidence to their parent(s) or teacher(s) about what they have done!

We divided the app into 4 sections to allow the children to take a break between building each screen – Home Screen, Create Screen, Look Screen and Submit Screen.

The children were amazing, with many questions coming in and many photos of them building and having fun on their computers! It was personally very rewarding and inspiring seeing them build their app. We were overwhelmed!

We’ve even created a highlights video of the day:

Thanks to all involved, especially the children!

Julia Simpson
Senior Consultant