Sidings Computer Learning Centre currently offers a range of free courses and flexible open learning sessions, ranging from complete beginner level up to more specific courses – e.g. excel spreadsheets, word processing and power-point presentations, etc. We also offer short courses to enable people to master the basics of setting up emails, accessing the internet to take advantage of online services, and get the most out of their mobile devices and social media.
The UK Online: Computer & Digital Learning Centre is led by a trained teacher, Geoff Stilwell, who is supported by a team of dedicated and friendly volunteers who can offer extra one to one support where needed. Learning is in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Learning can be at a flexible pace or follow a more structured approach in courses or specific workshops.
Computing: Your Choice
Open Learning Drop-In Sessions
The Open Learning sessions are a more flexible way to learn whatever you want with people there to help and guide you to achieve your goals.
You may not be able to commit to a structured course, but you can come to a drop-in whenever you are able and work on the same programme at your own speed. Whether you are an absolute beginner, improving or refreshing skills we can help you get there!
After learning the basics, previous students have learned how to use the Worldwide Web, how to use emails, save money with online shopping and stay secure online. People can also use these sessions to improve their ICT skills for employment purposes and update their CV’s.
People have researched their family history, learned about cloud storage, mobile devices, and become more confident with their digital cameras, transferring images from cameras and phones to the computer and to USB storage devices and much more!
Open Learning Workshops for the Over 50’s
Thursdays 10am – 12pm
Open Learning Workshops for Over 19’s
Tuesdays 7pm – 9pm
Thursdays 1pm – 3pm
Fridays 10am – 12pm
Courses and Workshops on Wednesdays
10m – 12pm and 1pm – 3pm (see website for new course details).
St@rt (Computing for Beginners)
St@rt stands for “Sidings Technology @t Room Temperature”. It is a structured but informal course for the absolute beginner, taking people through the basics of using computers that they can feel confident with simple word processing and using the Internet. People can obtain our St@rt learning booklet and other course materials (eg using excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations) when using our Open Learning Drop-ins – for which we appreciate a small donation.
Resources & Facilities
Our dedicated Computer Training Room has space for up to twelve people. We give access and instruction on Desktop and Laptop computers, Scanner and Digital Camera, with output on quality Monochrome and Colour Laser Printers. Teaching is aided and enhanced with the use of an interactive whiteboard.The centre facilities are accessible and can be accessed by people with physical disabilities.
We currently have the full Microsoft Office 2010 Suite including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, Access and Publisher plus the excellent Free Open Office suite of applications which provide compatibility with Microsoft Office. We have Adobe Photoshop Elements 7 for Digital Imaging. Internet access is using Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox browsers. Many Free applications such as Gimp for image manipulation, inkscape for vector image drawing, typing tutors, etc.
Email is possible through an Internet mail service like Yahoo, GMail or Hotmail or you may be able to access your personal mail if your ISP provides a webmail service. If you are experienced in Web Authoring we have Macromedia’s Dreamweaver MX and the Free NVu web authoring software. We also have simple typing tutor applications you can use to practice your keyboard skills.
Volunteer ICT team
There are many opportunities for people to volunteer within the UK Online: Computer Learning Centre at Sidings.
- Peer Support: if you have ICT skills, we can use you to help beginners and improvers which often leads to you learning more yourself.
- Admin Help: sometimes there are simpler but equally important tasks, like a bit of filing or photocopying.
- Training to up-skill: volunteers can take advantage of training courses helping them to learn new skills or enhance and update those they already have.
If you have time and would like to help others, please get in touch with Geoff by email on firstname.lastname@example.org or by using the form below or phone: 020 7372 0242 for more details.
Update: As of April 2020, due to the COVID19 crisis, we will now start offering some online tutorials which people can access by contacting the above number. Whilst this is a new initiative, we hope to continue this in future to add to our digital learning opportunities.