Recent Changes

Monday, January 8

  1. page ICT Resources edited ... Hour of Code In 2015 I became more interested in teaching kids coding, based on a positive ex…
    ...
    Hour of Code
    In 2015 I became more interested in teaching kids coding, based on a positive experience with the Hour of Code initiative. (Side note: as an IT professional that doesn't do much coding, I am not convinced that everyone needs to learn to code, it's not exactly the only IT skill you can work in, but I'd probably agree that everyone should at least learn a little about it).
    ...
    of Code at http://code.org is a
    ...
    start, but here is myI've also included a small list
    ...
    interesting and fun.fun below. On code.org we use Course 3 on Code Studio quite a lot with year 5/6 students - it's block based so may frustrate students who think they want to learn "real coding" but is really well structured for teaching a number of key computational thinking concepts.
    Learning Python
    The Australian Digital Technologies curriculum states that all year 7 students need to learn a "general purpose programming language". Of course as ICT professionals we'd all love to argue for decades over what is the best language to learn, but in my opinion Python is a pretty obvious choice for a wide range of reasons that I won't bore you with here.
    (view changes)
    11:35 pm

Monday, October 23

  1. page Learning Python edited Warning! Insert under construction digging man here... Here are some of the online resources that…
    Warning! Insert under construction digging man here...
    Here are some of the online resources that seem to be excellent for introductory Python. My main criteria are: free, don't require registration, provide tutorials if possible not just reference material.
    Python Room
    https://pythonroom.com - I have only had a quick look at this site so far but it looks excellent! For instance, I fumbled the closing parenthesis on one of the mini-challenges it gives you as you learn the basics, and it told me what I did wrong - it didn't just give me a syntax error.
    Hour of Python
    https://hourofpython.com - this site is hosted by trinket.io and that happens to be a commonly recommended Python online development environment. I haven't had a chance to try it out to see if it is really just an hour.

    (view changes)
    3:15 am
  2. page ICT Resources edited ... In 2015 I became more interested in teaching kids coding, based on a positive experience with …
    ...
    In 2015 I became more interested in teaching kids coding, based on a positive experience with the Hour of Code initiative. (Side note: as an IT professional that doesn't do much coding, I am not convinced that everyone needs to learn to code, it's not exactly the only IT skill you can work in, but I'd probably agree that everyone should at least learn a little about it).
    The Hour of Code is a great place to start, but here is my small list of other coding ideas that are interesting and fun.
    Learning Python
    The Australian Digital Technologies curriculum states that all year 7 students need to learn a "general purpose programming language". Of course as ICT professionals we'd all love to argue for decades over what is the best language to learn, but in my opinion Python is a pretty obvious choice for a wide range of reasons that I won't bore you with here.
    If you want your students to learn some Python, I've collected some links on the Learning Python page.

    Code Club
    Code Club is a really interesting initiative. Even if you don't have someone to run this club, they claim to make their resources available on their website and through github. (Although when I looked it is all in private repositories so I'm not sure if there actually is any way to access them).
    (view changes)
    3:13 am

Wednesday, October 18

  1. 7:02 pm

Tuesday, October 10

  1. 3:01 pm

Wednesday, September 13

  1. page microbit edited ... However, many of the initial activities are not really advanced and would make good micro:bit …
    ...
    However, many of the initial activities are not really advanced and would make good micro:bit activities for younger students.
    I've made some more notes about this course on the microbit Microsoft 14 week Intro to CS page.
    Looking through some of the initial activities, they do not appear to be very advanced at first, and could certainly be done by upper primary.
    For instance, lesson 1 involves creating a pet from craft supplies that can hold the microbit in place, typically as the face. The code blocks to show a face on the LEDs are provided.
    In lesson 2, "Algorithms", the main activity is showing a different "face" on the LEDs depending on whether button 1 or button 2 is pressed - again, the lesson instructions walk you through how to create the necessary blocks.

    (view changes)
    3:18 am
  2. page microbit Microsoft 14 week Intro to CS edited This curriculum is at https://makecode.microbit.org/courses/csintro. It is described as "targ…
    This curriculum is at https://makecode.microbit.org/courses/csintro. It is described as "targeted to middle school grades 6-8 (ages 11-14 years)".
    Looking more closely at the description, it seems to have quite a lot of content, as each of the 12 lessons consists of a 30 min unplugged activity, a 60 minute micro:bit activity, and 60-120 mins for an original project related to the concept. So it seems to me that you would want to be devoting two or three lessons per week to do it in one and a half terms.
    However, many of the initial activities are not really advanced and could make good micro:bit activities for younger students.
    Looking through some of the initial activities, they do not appear to be very advanced at first, and could certainly be done by upper primary. The first four lessons don't seem to require any special resources other than a microbit per pair of students, plus a computer for them to program the micro:bit. Other than that only standard craft supplies are used.
    Lesson 1 - Making
    For instance, lesson 1 "Making" involves creating a pet from craft supplies that can hold the microbit in place, typically as the face. The code blocks to show a face on the LEDs are provided.
    Lesson 2 - Algorithms
    In lesson 2, "Algorithms", the main activity is showing a different "face" on the LEDs depending on whether button 1 or button 2 is pressed - again, the lesson instructions walk you through how to create the necessary blocks. This lesson links well to the key concept of "branching" included in the Australian Year 3/4 Digital Technologies curriculum.(See https://goo.gl/NpGJy6)
    Lesson 3 - Variables
    The focus of this lesson is the use of variables. Choosing variable names is covered initially and the program created is used to count the score of students playing a game, such as Scissor Paper Rock. Example code is provided with full instructions. There are lots of fun extensions to this activity when you start looking at using sensors such as the accelerometer, e.g. count each time the micro:bit is shaken.
    Lesson 4 - Conditionals
    This takes the basic idea of Scissors Paper Rock and codes it up as a reasonably simple program that is activated when the micro:bit is shaken. However, the code is a reasonably big step up in complexity from previous lessons. The unplugged activity for this lesson is easily suitable for all ages and is meant to reinforce the concept of if...then statements.

    (view changes)
    3:05 am
  3. page microbit edited ... This curriculum is at https://makecode.microbit.org/courses/csintro. It is described as "…
    ...
    This curriculum is at https://makecode.microbit.org/courses/csintro. It is described as "targeted to middle school grades 6-8 (ages 11-14 years)".
    Looking more closely at the description, it seems to have quite a lot of content, as each of the 12 lessons consists of a 30 min unplugged activity, a 60 minute micro:bit activity, and 60-120 mins for an original project related to the concept. So it seems to me that you would want to be devoting two or three lessons per week to do it in one and a half terms.
    LookingHowever, many of the initial activities are not really advanced and would make good micro:bit activities for younger students.
    I've made some more notes about this course on the microbit Microsoft 14 week Intro to CS page.
    Looking
    through some
    ...
    upper primary.
    For instance, lesson 1 involves creating a pet from craft supplies that can hold the microbit in place, typically as the face. The code blocks to show a face on the LEDs are provided.
    In lesson 2, "Algorithms", the main activity is showing a different "face" on the LEDs depending on whether button 1 or button 2 is pressed - again, the lesson instructions walk you through how to create the necessary blocks.
    (view changes)
    2:43 am
  4. page microbit edited ... http://faraday.theiet.org/stem-activity-days/bbc-microbit/resources/index.cfm https://www.mic…
    ...
    http://faraday.theiet.org/stem-activity-days/bbc-microbit/resources/index.cfm
    https://www.microbit.co.uk/STEM
    Microsoft's 14 week "Intro to CS" Curriculum
    This curriculum is at https://makecode.microbit.org/courses/csintro. It is described as "targeted to middle school grades 6-8 (ages 11-14 years)".
    Looking more closely at the description, it seems to have quite a lot of content, as each of the 12 lessons consists of a 30 min unplugged activity, a 60 minute micro:bit activity, and 60-120 mins for an original project related to the concept. So it seems to me that you would want to be devoting two or three lessons per week to do it in one and a half terms.
    Looking through some of the initial activities, they do not appear to be very advanced at first, and could certainly be done by upper primary.
    For instance, lesson 1 involves creating a pet from craft supplies that can hold the microbit in place, typically as the face. The code blocks to show a face on the LEDs are provided.
    In lesson 2, "Algorithms", the main activity is showing a different "face" on the LEDs depending on whether button 1 or button 2 is pressed - again, the lesson instructions walk you through how to create the necessary blocks.

    (view changes)
    2:41 am

Thursday, September 7

  1. 11:31 pm

More