Saturday, 22 November 2014

Kids Who Code: Part 2

Last week I introduced my students to "coding" for the first time. If you're not sure what coding is, check out this link.

First, I asked the students if anyone knew any languages in addition to English. It was interesting to learn that most students knew Spanish, thank you Dora!

I then explained that we were all going to learn the language that computers use and that it is called "code." Everyone cheered!

We started our lesson by laying down a path of foam tiles on the carpet. The students then used arrows to instruct me where to go so that I could get from one end of the path to the other. Sometimes their instructions didn't work and they had to figure out how to fix it. Each time I completed the maze, the students cheered and gave each other high fives.

Next I used the mirroring function on our Smart Board to introduce the Kodable app. Kodable is a great app available for free on iTunes. Students use code to instruct a cute little fuzz ball through a maze, while trying to collect as many coins as possible.

Kodable App
I played the first level to demonstrate and then the students took over selecting arrows and giving our little fuzz ball directions. I could not believe how quickly they caught on.

Finally, the students were paired up and given their own iPads to try it out. It was awesome to see students working together, encouraging each other, problem solving, and trying over and over again without getting frustrated or giving up.

It sounds like a long process but the whole lesson took under 45 minutes, although many students begged to play for longer.

This week we will be teaching our grade 2 buddies about coding and introducing them to Kodable.

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