Rapid Router winter scene

You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, but do you recall the most famous reindeer of all?

Ocado has employed the services of Santa and the world’s most famous red-nosed reindeer to help students improve their coding skills.

Used by over 1,400 schools and more than 70,000 individual users, Rapid Router is a free, open source game developed by Ocado Technology and ICT teachers that helps Key Stage 1 (KS1) and Key Stage 2 (KS2) pupils understand programming basics and introduces them to the Python programming language.

Rapid Rudolph!

A massive snowstorm has just fallen over the Rapid Router world. Everything is now covered in snowflakes and the ponds are frozen, but Santa is determined as ever to navigate his sled on the windy roads of Rapid Router.

But with Christmas fast approaching, lots of new orders have arrived and the sled is overwhelmed. It’s up to you to save the day and guide Santa and Rudolph to their many destinations using Blockly and Python.

The Santa-powered Rapid Router is available for free now. Have fun!

Get involved

Rapid Router is developed by Code for Life, an initiative started by Ocado to get every child interested in coding. As the world’s largest online-only supermarket, Ocado understands the importance of cultivating the next generation of computer scientists. Just as we have used technology to revolutionise the way people buy groceries, Code for Life will help equip students with the skills needed to revolutionise the industries of tomorrow.

If you’re a teacher, make sure you register on our website now for free access to complete teaching materials, lesson plans and more. Also follow us on Twitter (@CodeForLifeUK) and like us on Facebook (Code for Life) for the latest news and announcements from the Code for Life team!

If you’re developer looking to contribute, check out our Code for Life GitHub portal and Rapid Router GitHub page where you can find more resources and the full source code for Rapid Router, respectively.

Celine Boudier, Code For Life Team Leader

December 14th, 2016

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Dee the robot character

In the spirit of collaboration, we’ve open-sourced the game and portal of our free Code for Life education initiative.

To give you a bit of background, Code for Life consists of free teaching resources, including lesson plans, videos, and the Rapid Router game.

To play, pupils use basic programming principles to guide a van to its destination, learning as they go.

To begin with they use Blockly, a visual programming language similar to Scratch. The routes and concepts get harder as pupils progress through each level. Later on, the game introduces Python.

Code for Life currently has 36,300 users around the world.

And now we’re hoping that people will be able to develop their skills further by contributing to Code for Life itself.

You can play with game-running JavaScript, Python/Django, animation using SGV and Raphael, and a lot more. We’d like input from all sorts of backgrounds, whether you’re: a programmer looking for a creative outlet; a teacher hoping to shape the resources; a polyglot who’d like to help with translation; or even a pupil putting your skills to the test.

To contribute, head over to GitHub, check out the issue tracker, and get started. There you can suggest new features or assign yourself an issue to develop (you’ll find more info about how to do this on GitHub).

You never know, if your code is impressive enough, you may even land an interview…

Have fun

October 27th, 2015

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Dee the robot character

I’m proud to announce the latest update to our Code for Life teaching resource: your pupils can now learn to code in Python using the Rapid Router game.

For anyone who’s unfamiliar, Python is a proper coding language used by companies such as Google and NASA. It’s also simple to write and debug, so it’s perfect as a first language to learn.

Our volunteers have created over 50 new levels to the game, which start by translating concepts from Blockly to Python, and then get more challenging to really put your pupil’s skills to the test.

They’ll not just pick up the language itself but also the importance of correct syntax – something that will give your students a great foundation for studying future languages and continuing with Python.

Log in to Code for Life now to check out the teaching pack and have a go on the new Rapid Router levels.

If you have any questions, as always just drop us an email: codeforlife@ocado.com

Paul Heideman, Technology Development Manager

February 3rd, 2015

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