December is such a fun month for so many reasons. My favorite thing about December is Computer Science week and the Hour of Code. As a self-taught programmer, I relish the opportunity to share little glimpses into how the technology we all use works, and that students can create things they may have only dreamt about through computer science. It feels a little like giving students a key to unlock a new world and our student always jump at the chance and ask for more.
At King this month students are learning about computational thinking by programming me (the teacher) to make a jelly sandwich. Students write directions
and I follow them exactly (which often results in a handful of jelly!) in order to demonstrate how a computer thinks. Students are also using Scratch, Scratch Jr., PBS Scratch Jr., Kodables, and tutorials from Code.Org
like Star Wars and Minecraft to learn to the basics of coding. Some classes focus on math skills or story telling, some classes will Skype with programmers from Apple, Facebook, or their own companies. We even had AP Computer Science students come from CRLS to share their knowledge and enthusiasm about programming!
If you are interested or your student wants to do more at home, go to the Code.Org
website for more information or email me
with questions or to ask for recommendations. I am always happy to have a conversation about CS or answer any questions you might have about technology at King. Also, keep an eye
out for parent coffees happening in the new Learning Commons in the future.