A TEACHER has achieved a lifelong ambition to have a computer coding book published.

Dan Aldred, 41, head of computer science at Thirsk School and Sixth Form College, has written Raspberry Pi Projects for Kids, which has been published by the US company No Starch Press.

And Mr Aldred will be at White Rose Books in Thirsk at 11am today to sign books and chat to computer enthusiasts.

The book, which is aimed at children from age ten, contains step-by-step instructions and detailed diagrams for 12 exciting projects, including a social media mirror which notifies you when a message has come in, a nature box with an in-built camera for the garden and an MP3 player. There is also a project where children can play rock, paper, scissors against the computer.

All projects are based around the Raspberry Pi, an inexpensive, pocket-sized computer that helps enthusiasts build and code their own work.

“I’ve always wanted to write a book, and I pitched this idea after doing some technical reviews,” said Mr Aldred, who lives near Northallerton and has been a teacher for 19 years. “I really wanted to get children into coding. These are weekend-long projects, which break down into smaller tasks so that you can track your progress.”

The book will be followed next spring by a set of coding cards, aimed at children aged five and upwards.

For the last ten years, Mr Aldred has taught at Thirsk School, where his Astro Pi club won a national competition in 2015 to write a computer programme for the International Space Station.

Their winning entry was the first code used by astronauts in space and the students later met several of the crew, including Tim Peake.

Mr Aldred, who contributed to Linux User and Developer magazine and writes resources for examination boards in the UK and abroad, plans to do more book signings at bookshops, including Waterstones in Northallerton, in the new year.