Are you participating in the worldwide Hour of Code next week? I am, but in a super simple way!
Some of you may be wondering what the Hour of Code is and why you should participate. The Hour of Code is a worldwide movement to expose our students to the language of computer programming (aka “code”), by dedicating just one hour each year to coding instruction. We all know that technology is our future, and we want our students to speak the language of the twenty-first century.
Why should we participate? Because students (especially girls and minorities) may not have the opportunity to learn code, unless we give them an introduction. Even better, you don’t have to know how to write code yourself to participate!
There are resources all over the internet, especially here on the Hour of Code website!
Here’s what I’m doing at our elementary school. (I’m in the middle of our first grade research project, so I’m keeping it super simple!) I set up times in our library for classes to come in with a buddy class. I’ll show them the introductory video for the Angry Birds video on the Hour of Code website, and then the older students will help the younger students complete as many steps as possible in an hour. Some teachers will complete this activity on their own during their computer lab time.
Here’s the link to the Teacher’s Quick Start Guide. And here’s the introductory video.
You can do this, right?
We’ll use pair programming, where the younger student and older student takes turns being either the navigator (makes suggestions and ask questions) or the driver (controls the mouse and keyboard). I have 23 iPad minis, and I’ll have the short cut to this website on the iPad home screen.
If I didn’t have iPad minis and only had my teacher computer and the big screen, I would do this activity as a large group, and let students take turns as driver and navigator. If I only had five minutes, I would show some of the videos from the Hour of Code website. In other words, I’d find a way!
For all of these activities, and even if I had no time at all, I would send home these printable bookmarks, so that students could explore computer programming at home.
I’ve just uploaded these bookmarks to my Teachers Pay Teachers store, so you can download them and print them for free! The bookmarks have websites and apps that students can use at home (or in class) if they decide they’d like to learn more about code.
Please leave a comment letting me know what YOUR school is doing for the Hour of Code!