Friday, December 19, 2014

Hour of Code

It has been awhile since I have blogged, but now starting to get back into the transition of things after embarking on a new position and purchasing a new home! Many first this year for the family to keep us busy.

Last week we participated with the Hour of Code, presented by I'm sure many of you know about the event by now, but for those that don' is a week long celebration to raise awareness about computer programming to students. To try and get them more involved and to hopefully gain some sort of interest in one area of programming.

My students have very much loved it in the past, and once again it was a favorite again this year. So much a favorite that we had to code not only one week, but two. Keeping in mind, I only see my students once a week for 50 minutes.

We began our coding session with a video. A very popular one from Code.or called, "What Most Schools Don't Teach." It is a great 5 minute video that really gives a lot of visuals on other areas of computer programming.

After watching the video, we began with a short Google Slide presentation to walk students through different types of coding and some of the vocabulary they would stumble across.

Because of our time being so little with the students and everyone having a different taste, my teaching partner and I came up with the idea of creating a coding menu. This would allow students to pick activities from different various levels and different types of coding. That way, they can participate with the Hour of Code doing something that would appeal to them. Click the image below for a FREE copy. Images are taken from, Tynker and Made With Code.

Menu created by K.McFarlin and M. Thorne
The students really loved the idea of spending two weeks on coding, which allowed them to experience more than one activity in the short time that we have them.

Top two favorite coding activities by students:
1. Flappy Bird (They loved being able to share their game on Edmodo with other students at our school)
2. Made with Code by Google (Both boys and girls loved the animation and design programming activities)

After winter break, we will be diving into Syntax coding. They are very excited for that!