Coding in the Primary Classroom
To many, coding is a foreign term not used in the classroom. Questions, anxiety, and even fear take over teachers when they hear the word, “coding.” It is not something to be afraid of but rather embraced. There will be more jobs requiring coding than ever before which means we need our students immersed in the world of coding at every grade level. There are several tools, apps, and resources available to all age and ability levels. It doesn’t have to be “one more thing” in your classroom. Instead, coding can be integrated in many subject areas.
December hosts the “Hour of Code” all over the world. Code.org is a great resource for all learners. They provide detailed lessons with unplugged activities that do not involve the use of technology along with plugged activities your students can do with their iPads and laptops. For those of you who have never coded before, this would be a great resource to explore. Teachers do not have to be fluent in coding to teach it in the classroom. Code.org provides everything you need for you and your students.
As mentioned earlier, there are several apps that are great learning tools as well. Kodable is a great first step because it teaches you simple algorithms to use then builds harder lessons on from there. There is a free version that is already on your student iPads ready to be explored! Scratch Jr. is another great coding app. This app allows students to create whatever they want while using coding. There are many options in Scratch Jr. that allow the students to take their creativity to the next level. As an added bonus, students can share their Scratch Jr. creations simply by emailing or air dropping to other iPads. For more information, visit http://www.scratchjr.org/ to find tutorials and more information before you introduce this app to your students.
Code.org, Kodable, and Scratch Jr. are just three quick and easy ways to start using coding in your classroom. There are many coding tools and resources out there that can help you and your students learn to code so don’t be shy! Play around with a few and start to get comfortable because whether we’re ready or not, coding is our future.