December 09, 2013

Hour of Code at Lincoln

Lincoln classrooms participating in the Hour of Code 2013.

Today I spent the day at Lincoln public school, helping grade school classes participating in the Hour of Code. We were hosted by teachers Cindy Matthes and Terry Green, who both have a long history of championing technology education for young kids. Terry literally wrote the book on teaching engineering to K-2 kids.

Here are some of the fourth-grade creations - as you can see, at this level, coding is mostly about learning about quantities and careful sequencing.

Several of the fourth grade girls were the natural leaders their Hour of Code classes: they had a ton of ideas of what they wanted to draw. They wanted to know how to get the colors they wanted, how to draw curves, how to draw text, and how to make the turtle wear a different colored shell. There were very few preconceptions about what they could or could not do with a computer at that age, and they were persistent in getting things to work.

The middle-school group was self-selected (and, in an odd contrast with the experience in the fourth grade group, they were mostly boys). They were able to speed through Lesson 1 at in 30 minutes, and we did a bit of Lesson 2 as well. In middle school, there is a pretty broad spectrum of styles - some kids wanted to try small experiments of their own invention, and other kids wanted to type in a complicated ambitious program from the book to see if they could get it to work. The book of 100 example projects was a useful tool for this older group.

Some pictures from the event:

Posted by David at December 9, 2013 05:32 PM
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