Steps to Create A Dojo
A guide to starting up a Dojo.
Main Steps Towards Starting a Dojo
1. Gather your Team
Once we have found out a little more about you and your proposed Dojo the next step is for you to find some Mentors and Volunteers to help you organise and run your Dojo. We recommend gathering a team of interested and dedicated individuals from the start, it will really have a positive impact on your Dojo and cut down the workload for everyone involved.
If it is legally required in your area it is important that you and your mentors are sufficiently background checked to ensure your safety and that of the young people you will be working with.
- You do not need to have a big team but it is always better to have support from a core team when organising a Dojo so that one individual is not responsible for all of the administrative and organisational work.
- Find interested local technical volunteers to mentor, find parents who can help out and volunteer when they bring their children etc. You can then have planning meetings with your team in advance of setting up your Dojo. You can see our Mentor Guide in our Mentors and Volunteers section, it could be a great tool for helping you gather some local mentors.
2. Find your Venue
The next step then is to find your Venue A good venue is vitally important for running a successful Dojo, Dojo's cannot be hosted in private residences such as a house or apartment. A good example of a venue would be a library, business, canteens, schools or community centres. We recommend that the young people attending bring their own laptops so the venue should have, at least, plug sockets for laptops, internet access and tables and chairs for the attendees. We recommend looking into local community spaces such as schools,libraries, community centres, youth centres, colleges and universities etc. as spaces for hosting your Dojo. You can also consider approaching businesses, hackspaces, tech hubs and conference centres in your local area.
3. Set a Date and Plan
Once you have found your Venue and gathered a team of Mentors and Volunteers you can begin to Plan your Dojo. You can hold planning meetings with your team and plan promoting your Dojo and getting kids to come, getting more mentors involved and what Learning Resources you wish to use in your Dojo.
- Pick a date to get started, have a meeting with your team to plan what content you are going to cover with your mentors and advertise your Dojo so that you have some kids to come along!
- We recommend setting up an email address and Twitter account specifically for your Dojo to deal with queries and promote your Dojo. If it possible we also recommend setting up a website for your Dojo where you can deal with your own registration, mentor recruitment etc. It is possible as well to use a simple free blog tool such as Wordpress which will host your content and provide you with a domain.
- You can check out Kata's Learning Resources section, our community wiki, for samples of lessons and projects that have been used in other Dojos around the world.
- Most Dojos run once a week/twice a month etc. We recommend deciding on a regular time and date for your Dojo to ensure consistency. You can use Zen the community platform to schedule event and issue tickets for your Dojo to manage attendees.
4. Get your Dojo verified on Zen
Once you have found a Venue, some Mentors and Volunteers and have settled on a target date for your Dojo to start the next step is to register on Zen, the Dojo listing system, and create a listing for your Dojo. Once your listing has been verified you will visible on the global map of Dojos.