Hour of Code

Hour of Code 01 Hour of Code 04 Hour of Code 03

Last year my fifth grade class participated in the Hour of Code. Kids loved it. This year, I encouraged all classes at both of my buildings to try it out. I’m fortunate to be in a district that also promoted participation.

My reason for classes trying the Hour of Code this week was because from coding, kids learn:

  1. Digital literacy
  2. Problem-solving skills
  3. How to create websites, apps, computer programs, calculators, etc.
  4. Career skills*

*Over the next 10 years it is estimated there will be 1.4 million jobs in computer sciences and only 400,000 graduates qualified to do them. (http://code.org/)

Coding also stimulates design & creativity and strengthens math skills.

At Alexander Doniphan, many classes participated: An Essential Skills Classroom, gifted classes, first/fourth grade buddy classes, etc.

I still believe that students were learning digital literacy, problem-solving skills, and career skills, but this year I noticed something else. In addition to a very high level of student engagement and learning, students were making authentic and meaningful connections. Student to student, student to one-on-one para, and student to teacher connections were being made by watching each other, working together, and helping one another.

I still believe in the power of students learning computer science for the academic benefits, but I’ve walked away from this experience with a more meaningful message: Nothing a teacher does is as powerful as making a connection with a kid.

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