CODE

       As a teacher, I fell in love with www.code.org.  With our technological society, it is going to be important that kids know who to manipulate and create programs for the computer.

      Www.code.org has created several levels of the curriculum. Course 1 is for Kindergarten or First grade. Course 2 is for second and third grades. Course 3 is for third and 4th grades and course 4 is for fourth and fifth grades. There are other levels of courses as well, which is geared more for the middle and high school levels.

      What I love about www.code.org curriculum, is that it teaches the kids so much more than programming. It is set up in a fun game format, from Angry Birds to Plant Eating Zombies, to The Artist. The kids learn to problem solve. They learn they can’t skip steps. They learn to try and try again. The kids learn to endure. They have such pride in themselves when they “beat” the level they are on.

      The kids who struggle are the one who try to skip steps. They skip watching the videos or they try to jump to different levels. They know they can ask each other for help. Sometimes they ask too much so they know they have to try several times before anyone will help.

       Some of my students who are most successful are my special needs students. They are already learning strategies in the classroom to help them endure. They struggle with traditional classroom learning but they thrive and succeed with www.code.org. They also show the most excitement when they are successful with a particular level.

       The kids love having time to go on www.code.org. They especially love to work on “Hour Of Code” courses, which are short courses and allow them to create their own versions of “Flappy Bird”, “Minecraft”, “Star Wars” and other stories and games. They like the quick success and creativity they are able to have. They love being able to share with me their creations.

       The form of programming www.code.org uses is a simplified version of Javascript called “Blockly” The kids can click and drag single blocks of code and change variables to get the level of the game to do what they need it to do to pass. We also use “Blockly” to program Dash and Dot, simple robots I will discuss in a future post. Going through www.code.org helps the kids to learn how the code works together and helps them program Dash and Dot easier.

       There is nothing better than a child being excited and encouraged when they are successful programming a game to do what they need it to do.

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