Tag Archives: teaching coding

The medium of thought: @Scratch is bad for learning Programming and Computational Thinking? #coding #edtech #education

…Maybe. It depends. I’m increasingly frustrated by the various groups and media who seemingly want to shoot-down all the positive work we do with teaching good programming practice in textual programming languages. While tens of thousands of educators have been pushing ahead with the 21st century, teaching children not only to program, but more importantly

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@yallsop @roehamptonedu Festival of Computing 2016 Computational Thinking thoughts

Friday was both the final day of this year’s PGCE, and the Festival of Education, both taking place in/around the lawns of Grove House. Sadly this meant I only got to see half of each of them. Teaching Computational Thinking through marble runs / Unplugged I was very unsure how my morning session would go.

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SURVEY RESULTS: what programming languages are being taught in classroom? #edtech #ict #computing #education

I ran a survey of (mostly UK) Computing teachers, asking what we’re teaching in classrooms, and why. In the UK, we have a new curriculum which demands all teenagers learn programming, computer science/theory, and core computing/ICT skills. Headline results UK teachers recommend or choose to teach Python and/or Scratch Of all the languages teachers have

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What’s the point of Functions in #programming? (for primary/middle schoolers)

My common day-to-day use is “something that is used to generate individual parts of something, and that I might write alternative versions of in future”. Here the use of a function lets you replace a generator with a different generator. Such examples occur frequently in OOP, but are only truly dependent upon functions. For instance:

Why use #python when teaching #coding in school?

Much (most?) of the literature is gloriously one-sided and IMHO deceptive in pretending that Python is good at many things it sucks at. This doesn’t help those teachers trying to make a fair and balanced decision. Overall, I believe that if you learn programming primarily via Python you’ll be a weaker programmer than if you

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“Choose a shape to draw”: example #python code for simple input (y7/y8) with graphics

Aimed at Years 7 and 8, when giving them interesting/fun things to work on without them knowing/understanding all the background concepts. i.e. this assumes you work on a “teach Y7-8 basics and SOME principles, then re-teach / add the other principles in more detail to Y9-Y11 when they move into GCSE-level work” plan. Here we

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“draw Forest”: Example #python lesson/code for why functions/procedures are useful

Again, I was looking for something to include in my lesson that would show the value of procedures [1] in a way that the students would care about. I wrote this, and set it up as a demo at start of lesson as they came in. PS: note the faked perspective effect. If you have

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2 of 3: Lesson where locked computers worked for students benefit #edtech

Back to my class… In part 1, I admitted that I’d locked students’ computers for more than half a lesson. I stated that I felt this was a good thing, despite my pre-teaching revulsion and horror at such actions. This week, I used CC in LOCKDOWN for more than half a lesson …why? How? On

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Ideas for Y7-Y9 coding lessons from Usborne books

Last week, Usborne made their 1980’s books on computer-programming available free for anyone to download (PDFs here – click on the book covers over on the right hand side). The “Computer Games Listings” books are particularly interesting; is there any use in them for teaching Computing today? Listings The listings are surprisingly hard to invent:

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