Hour of Code is an annual event for schools organised by Code.org, a group that seeks to promote coding around the world, particularly supporting women and minorities. Typically, Hour of Code takes place in the first week of December, but the 200+ activities are available to explore anytime. It could be a good opportunity for you to increase the amount of coding you include in your teaching, or just to have options for fun end-of-year activities.
If you are interested in exploring Hour of Code with your students, we recommend you:
Have a group discussion about which students are interested in coding and what they may know already – perhaps skilled students could lead novice students
Take a look over the HoC activities library and offer students some choice about what/how they wish to learn
Consider incorporating robotics such as Edison (UES), MangoBot (LES) and Lego Mindstorms (UES-HS) either in-class or in the design lab(s)
Talk to anyone in Ed Tech for more specific ideas linked to your units
Outside of the Code.org library, there are other ways to explore coding with your students, including:
While these activities are probably best suited to Grades 2-5, the learning sequence continues into more complex activities that would likely be applicable to higher grades. If you would like to know more, please get in touch!
The Edison robot is a powerful, engaging tool for teaching Elementary students computational thinking and computer programming in a hands-on way.
With built-in sensors as well as lights, sounds and autonomous behaviour capabilities, Edison makes robotics education accessible to students of all ages.
Respond to light and sound
Follow lines and avoid obstacles
Communicate with other Edison robots
Connect to other Edison robots and LEGO bricks
And much more!
Edison robots can be programmed in different ways to suit students’ age/ability:
Printable barcodes that the robot reads as it drives over (simple)
“Ed Blocks” drag and drop block graphic language coding that students perform on iPad (intermediate)
“EdWare” hybrid coding app (block or script) (UES)
“EdPy” line based script coding using Python (advanced)
We can work with you and your team to plan some discrete or integrated robotics activities using Edison robots. Currently we have around 30 robots based in the ES Design Lab that we can play with in either the lab or in classrooms.