Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Kids Who Code: A Successful Code-a-thon

After much hard work and preparation, the Grade 1s successfully hosted the Kids Who Code Code-a-thon last week!  The 22 kids from our class ran 6 different coding stations, featuring coding activities from Kodable, The Foos, Lightbot, Tynker, Scratch Jr. and 

We had over 140 guests, including students from other classrooms and local dignitaries.  Guest classes in attendance included Mrs. Hrymak’s Grade 3 & 4 class from Rapid City School, Mrs. Caldwell’s Kindergarten Class from Miniota School, Mrs. Gorrell’s Grade 2 class from Shoal Lake School, Mr. Smith’s Grade 8 class from Hamiota Collegiate and the Grades 2,3 and 4 classes from Hamiota Elementary.  Local dignitaries in attendance included Arther-Virden M.L.A. Mr. Doyle Piwniuk, R.M. of Hamiota Mayor Mr. Larry Oakden, Park West School Division Superintendent Mr. Tim Mendel and Park West School Division Board Chair Darren Naherniak.  A group of awesome student teachers from the Brandon University Faculty of Education volunteered to help us keep the event running smoothly!

This unique, student-led event was planned to engage students in learning coding as part of the Hour of Code™ movement.  The Hour of Code™ is considered the largest learning event in history, with more than 100 million students worldwide already completing an hour of code.  This global event is designed to spark interest in computer science since many computer science jobs go unfilled and few schools teach computer science.  I was very proud of what great coding teachers my students were for this special event - they helped so many others to learn more about coding!  Great job grade 1s!


Wednesday, December 9, 2015

2015 Kids Who Code: The Code-a-thon Returns!

We live in a world surrounded by technology and we know that students will need to know how to effectively use technology to succeed in their futures.  And it’s more than just a need to use technology, it’s a need to create with technology and understand how technology works.  However, only a tiny fraction of people are learning computer science.   

That’s why my class is joining the largest learning event in history: The Hour ofCode!  Hour of Code takes place during Computer Science Education Week (December 7-13th).   More than 100 million students worldwide have already tried an Hour of Code and we are excited to see that number grow.  We are putting our own twist on Hour of Code again this year.  The Grade 1s in my class are very excited to host our 2015 Kids Who Code Code-a-thon! This exciting, student-led event will take place at our school on Friday, December 11.  

The Kids Who Code Code-a-thon idea was born last year while I was working with fellow educator Mrs. Devon Caldwell.  We decided that planning a coding event with a project based learning approach would be a great way for our students to start coding.  Students are in charge of planning the event, including making the guest list, sending invitations, preparing coding activities for our guests and planning the refreshments. 

Check out the 2014 Kids Who Code Code-a-thon video here:

Read more about coding in our classroom in these posts:

Use the Kids Who Code Code-a-thon Tip Sheet to plan your own Code-a-thon event: