Sunday, October 23, 2016

Connect with Coding

Do you want to connect your students with the coders around the world? Don't worry, you don't have to be an expert to join the fun!
 I use the code.org curriculum to teach basics of computer science. 
I love their curriculum since they have many great unplugged (no technology) lessons to introduce computer science vocabulary and concepts. The following activities can be used as a follow up for the unplugged lessons. 
#LoopDanceParty
Unplugged Lesson: Getting Loopy (p. 61)
After the lesson, have your students create their own dance moves and loop sequence. Share the loop dance on Twitter at #LoopDanceParty as well as other coding communities such as #csk8 #elemcode #kidskodex. The kids will have a blast dancing to the algorithm that other classes create! Here are some examples.



If possible, record your students dancing and share! This is a clip from last year when we exchanged the loop dance with Michelle Flicek's class (@mflicek1 ). We met over Google Hangout to perform the dance:)

The Big Event
Unplugged Lesson: The Big Event (p.72)
After the lesson, the students will create their own event controller & events. Share the creation at #codebigevent as well as other coding communities such as #csk8 #elemcode #kidskodex. It would be fun to connect with other classes via Google Hangout or Skype to do this activity.

#MysteryDash
Are you a big fan of Wonder Workshop Dash & Dot? 
If you own Dash, we could play #MysteryDash --- Where in the world is Dash located? 
A fabulous teacher Jake Lee (@TeachingJake) came up with a great idea! Read his post here.
To do this, you will need an alphabet mat such as this. (each square is 7 by 7 inches. Don't forget the start and the letter Z) 


Once you have the mat, your students will code Dash to spell the name of your state. Take a screenshot of the code and post it on Twitter using #MysteryDash hashtag. 
You can guess other classes' location by programming their codes & figuring out what Dash would spell! Your students can locate the state on the map, generate some questions to Tweet or even meet the class via Google Hangout or Skype! 

Coding Tip: Last year my students were playing a mystery word game on the grid. They decided to have Dash stop at the letter they wanted & change the light color to red . Watch this video as a reference.  Their word was "bow." 

If you have any other ideas to connect our students, please let me know! Do you need more ideas to integrate coding into your curriculum? Here is my post about curriculum integration.