Last week Francis Wyman took part in code.org‘s Hour of Code. It was a nation-wide effort to expose k-12 students to Computer Science. At Francis Wyman, every class in grades 2-5 spent an hour learning about computer programming. Some came down to the computer lab; others did the hour on iPads. First grade will do their Hour of Code this week.
Code.org has a great k-8 tutorial teaching students the basics of coding. They also have tutorials for older learners as well. These work across devices (laptop, iPad, etc) and are web-based so you can try them out at home.
However, this wasn’t really about learning to code. It was a quick exposure to Computer Science. It was about logical and sequential thinking. It was about finding creative and efficient solutions to problems. Though the tutorials were individual, it was great to see the students quickly come together to work in small ad hoc groups to find success.
Every day we have countless interactions with computers: cell phones, traffic lights, microwaves, your house’s thermostat. Do you know how those things work?