Image of robot with a rocket

The Challenge

The Challenge is to complete four free digital thinking Challenge Activities at school between the start of Term 1 and the end of Term 3 in 2019.

The Challenge is open to all Year 3-6 students at registered South Australian schools.

Find out more here.

Can students outside of Years 3-6 still take part?

1. Outside of School option

Children of any age are able to take part in the Challenge as individual participants, via the Outside of Schools option. Access the Outside of Schools option via the home page for more information.


If you teach outside of Years 3-6 but would still love to run the Challenge during school time and would like your school to gain recognition for taking part, simply contact us to discuss your requirements.

If appropriate, your school can be listed as a participant in the School-Led Challenge Extension on the website and your students taking part earn a certificate of achievement.

Please note, Challenge Extra Schools are not eligible for digital rewards unless they have students in Years 3-6 also taking part. The student testimonial provided to win rewards must be from a Year 3-6 student.

This new category has been introduced to meet demand for schools wanting a way for their students outside of Years 3-6 to take part during school time.

3. Informal Option

All Challenge activities and extended learning material are free and accessible to all. Feel free to use anything you find here in your classroom!

The Challenge will evolve over future years to meet demand.

Reasons for the Schools’ Challenge being restricted to Years 3-6 in 2019:

  • The Challenge material for this year’s Challenge is best for children aged in middle primary.
  • Rewards for schools are specifically intended for children in Years 3-6.











Step 1

Find out if your school is already registered here.

If so, go to STEP 3. If not, continue to STEP 2.

Step 2

School registrations for 2019 have now closed.

The Commissioner’s newest challenge, SPACE TO DREAM, a free design thinking challenge, is landing in 2020. Schools can register here for either challenge, or both, for 2020!

Step 3

Schools already registered for 2019, follow these steps:

Every school that has registered will nominate a Challenge Coordinator who will print or share the Coding Record with all students taking part.

Challenge Coordinators are able to run the Challenge however they like. They may choose to run the Challenge via their school’s Year 3-6 class teachers.

There’s no minimum or maximum number of students required for a school to register and take part.

Step 4

Coordinators or teachers can choose any four Challenge activities to work through together or students can choose their own.

Run the activities however suits your school.

Step 5

Look at the Beginner’s Guide if you aren’t sure what activities to choose.

Step 6
Take a note of the key dates to make sure you complete the Challenge in time.
Step 7

Challenge Coordinators are asked to collect all students’ Coding Records and retain them for 6 months.

Step 8

Challenge Coordinators will use the forms to complete and submit the Challenge Completion Form before the deadline of 27 September 2019.

The Challenge Completion Form invites each school to provide a student testimonial on taking part in the Challenge. The most creative and insightful entries win rewards.

The Challenge Activities

Not sure what Challenge Activities to select for your students?
Check out the recommended activities in our Beginner’s Guide.

Or explore the full range of free step-by-step activities here:

Access DT Hub™

Find out more
Australian Digital Technologies Curriculum-approved options with complete lesson plans.

Digital thinking activities across various subject areas such as Health, the Arts, Geography and Science.

Access Hour of Code™ Activities

Find out more
A great place to start as all lessons are step-by-step and there’s something for everyone. Character themed activities include coding with Star Wars®, Minecraft®, Disney characters from Moana® and Frozen®, Angry Birds®, NBA® and more.

Access Grok Learning™ Activities

Find out more
Never tried coding before? Try some basic Blockly coding with the cute Monster Maker.

All activities include access to lesson plans for teachers meeting Australian Digital Technology curriculum requirements.

Access CS Unplugged™ Activities

Find out more
Core fundamentals of programming without devices! You’ll only need items like chalk, paper, pens, pebbles, bits ‘n’ bobs and your digital thinking brain. Great activities to work through with your class.

Access MakeCode™ Activities

Find out more
Always wanted a micro:bit device but don’t have one? Use the free online micro:bit simulator here to make a flashing heart or a game where you can play ‘rock paper scissors’. Plus lots more to try here.

Access Code Club™ Activities

Find out more
Step-by-step projects to complete using free downloads to make your own musical instruments with Scratch, create a webpage to tell a joke with HTML and CSS and send secret messages with Python.

Rewards (Schools)

Schools taking part are eligible to win enticing digital rewards for the benefit of all students:

  • A brand new school website or upgrade
    1 winner
  • Class set of programmable micro:bits
    4 winners
  • The latest programmable camera drones
    10 winners
  • Grok ‘all access’ class subscriptions
    6 winners
  • Data packs with Powerbanks
    4 winners

Plus, every school that participates receives access to 3 exclusive 1 hour Digital Challenge webinars written for South Australian teachers by Microsoft.

And every child completing the Challenge earns a certificate from the Commissioner for Children and Young People.

*Terms and conditions apply. Please refer to the Full Terms and Conditions for more information.

Photo of our rewards (drone, website, etc.)

Key Dates


First day Term 1 (29 Jan 2019)

Schools need to register by 5 July 2019.

Individual children taking part outside of school do not need to register. Simply submit your completed Coding Record online by 27 September 2019. Find out how to take part as an individual participant here.


Last day Term 2 (5 July) 2019


13 Sept 2019 (recommendation only)

Schools are advised to ask students to return their completed coding records to their Challenge Coordinator well in advance of the Challenge closing date (27 September 2019) so the Coordinator has plenty of time to submit the school’s Challenge Completion Form.


9,16 and 23 Sept 2019

School Challenge Coordinators will be sent reminder emails to submit their school’s Completion Form by the due date.


Last day Term 3 (27 Sept) 2019

Challenge Completion Forms due from schools.

Coding Records due from children taking part outside of school.


First 4 weeks of Term 4 (14 Oct to 8 Nov) 2019


Coding Record

Print or share with every student taking part – to be completed by each student and retained by their school Challenge Coordinator

(PDF, 96KB)

Challenge Completion Form

Completed online once per school

(Link to online form)

Image of robot lifting weights


Would you like to take your students further on their digital learning experience?
There’s even a free lending library where you can borrow robots for your class to play with.

Fact Sheets

Promotional Materials

Download posters, flyers, social media assets and more to share news of the Challenge with other teachers, parents and families and students at your school:
Posters to print (A4)
Poster for schools
(to print A4)
Posters to print (A3)
Poster for schools
(to print A3)
Shareable social media post
Shareable social media post
Flyer for schools – is the Challenge right for my school?
Flyer for schools – is the Challenge right for my school?
Print & Keep Guide - Six steps for Challenge Coordinators
Print & Keep Guide – Six steps for Challenge Coordinators
After you have registered your school you will be emailed a bundle of exclusive promotional material to share with parents, teachers and students:
Digital seal for school website / prospectus

Official Commissioner’s Digital Challenge Registered School Seal to include on social media / website / prospectus material

Challenge Destination poster (A4 and A3)
Challenge Destination poster
(A4 and A3)
Postcard for school newsletters
Digital postcard for school newsletter
Photo of Helen Connolly, Commissioner for Children and Young People, South Australia

Commissioner's Message

Children of South Australia asked for more ways to be creative, to prepare for jobs of the future and to start learning the things they are going to need to know, now.

So I’ve launched my Digital Challenge. This year it’s all about computational thinking and basic coding for every level.

When you learn to think and create with a digital mindset you are learning to speak Robot!

Helen Connolly

Commissioner for Children and Young People, South Australia


Ally Watson

Ally Watson

CEO & Co-Founder at Code Like A Girl

The future is technology. Women are at risk of losing out on tomorrow’s best job opportunities. The situation presents a unique opportunity for females to step up and take action. The future is very much looking to artificial intelligence, and if it’s only men building that intelligence there’s going to be continued bias in the technology of the future.
Paul Clapton-Caputo

Paul Clapton-Caputo

Leader at Learning Technologies, Leadership Development, Department for Education ǀ Director at Educators SA ǀ Principal Consultant at EdTechSA

This Challenge opens young minds to thinking technologically. It will grow diversity and inclusion and opportunity for those that will soon lead this work in creating tools and systems yet unimagined. Human, cultural and systems diversity require the chance for every child and young person in South Australia to be part of this thinking and mix.
Professor Katrina Falkner

Professor Katrina Falkner

Lead at Computer Science Education Research (CSER) Group | Lead at Centre for Distributed and Intelligent Technologies - Modelling and Analysis

It is essential for our next generation to not only learn about how digital technology works and how to use it, but also how to create new technologies. Understanding how we create technology solutions empowers people in solving their own problems and those of their communities in ways that truly address their needs.
Dr Rebecca Vivian

Dr Rebecca Vivian

Research Fellow at Computer Science Education Research (CSER) Group

Technology increasingly has an impact on every field today – including finance, fashion, agriculture, business, art, medicine and more! Providing opportunities for children to develop computational thinking and digital skills is fundamental to building their capacity to be problem-solvers and solution-creators in a digital world.  
Professor James Curran

Professor James Curran

Academic Director at Australian Computing Academy | Director at National Computer Science School | CEO at Grok Learning

Digital technologies make thoughts concrete without requiring the physical world. Any problem that can be turned into data, you can manipulate and interact with in such a way that you could change the world – and there’s nothing more amazing than that.


Proudly Supported By

Microsoft logo
Australian Information Industry Association logo
EWS - Education Web Solutions logo
Grok Learning logo
Public Libraries Service of South Australia
Scouts logo
Girl Guides logo
Children’s University logo
Thinkfun Games logo
Wade’s World
Digital Technologies Hub
CS Unplugged logo
MakeCode logo
Computer Science Education Research Group logo
Code Club Australia logo
Code Like a Girl logo
Advanced Technology Program
Australian Computing Academy logo
National Computer Science School logo
Onkaparinga Libraries logo
The Hartley Institute logo
Acknowledgement of Country

We respectfully acknowledge and celebrate the Traditional Owners of the lands throughout South Australia and we pay our respects to their Elders – and to past, present and future generations of their children and young people.

Digital Thinking Schools