Students and teachers in grades K-12 participated. Some used code.org to get to the Angry Bird/Zombie tutorial and learn some basic computational thinking. Some used iPad apps such as Kodable, Light-bot, Daisy the Dinosaur or Cargo-bot. However they did it, these newest coders loved it and wanted to do more. Watching kindergarteners, who, when asked if they thought they would be good at coding said, "NO!", grow big smiles on their faces and try again and again when they got stuck, was an absolute pleasure. Fourth graders jumped right in and helped each other when they were puzzled about what to do next. They were all building stamina and the ability to persevere, even when things got tougher.
Teachers were taking risks here - big ones! It definitely made them feel better when they were reminded that they really didn't need to know what to do - the kids could do it! When teachers tried it, they LOVED it! Many confided that they became a little addicted themselves.
The Hour of Code provided a way to show just how essential computational thinking and coding are for the future of these students. I think it truly helped teachers, who had little or no experience with coding, to understand students for whom this is a passion, a little better. I can't wait to see where this excitement takes us next!
Click HERE to see 6th grade coders on Channel 30 news.
Click HERE for article in The Town Times (see pages 14 & 19).