This week is Computer Science Education Week. In conjunction with the week, and to encourage more people to try their hand at coding, Hadi Partovi and his army of friendly coders are encouraging us to create an Hour of Code. Two years ago this effort began and it grows every year. You don't need any experience to try your hand at some basic coding. The internet is crawling with easy activities and tutorials. In fact, Google's Made with Code has a fun Santa Tracker that is easy peazy. It won't take you an hour, but it might whet your appetite for more coding fun.
Two years ago I signed up to create an Hour of Code with my students. I blogged about it here. This year, like the previous two years, I will teach my students to write programs on their graphing calculators. I will lead them through one and let them create a second with only one requirement: the program must be used to solve a chemistry problem. I am always amazed at what they come up with. And how quickly they can do it after seeing just one program written.
If that sounds too high tech for you, try out one of these other resources:
- Free classes at the Apple Store this week
- Create stories, games, and animations with Scratch
- Learn to design video games with Gamestar Mechanic
- No tech? No problem. Learn the principles of coding with offline activities
There is something on this list for all ages, from about age 6 on.
No one thinks that completing an Hour of Code with make someone an expert. But the idea that every student should have access to computer science education is a noble one. I have seen first hand in my classroom that, for some students, seeing that they can write a program is transformative. Spark someone's imagination this week by helping them create an Hour of Code. You'll be glad you did. And so will they.