NISD ECT Labs Kick Off the Hour of Code

By Alison Topper

The Hour of Code is a global movement reaching tens of millions of students in 180+ countries.  It was only logical that Northside's elementary students join in! Our students visit the Elementary Computer Technology (or Elementary Computational Thinking) lab on a regular basis. The students experience technology by completing various technology related projects. Dedicated ECTs (paraprofessional Elementary Computer Technologists) lead the way.

Computer Science Education Week, December 7-13, is the week for Hour of Code. All our ECTs were provided with a menu of options for students to explore coding, the language of computational thinking. Students learn how to put together the specific instructions that all computers, from smartphones to gigantic mainframes, need to complete tasks, through a series of fun engaging tutorials!

The activities include things like teaching a Flappy Bird to capture a pig, making detailed moves in Minecraft, designing images and pictures, and developing apps and games. The students revisited topics from the beginning of the year, when they learned how computers receive, process, and execute instructions, as they prepared to participate in the tutorials.

The ECTs put their own personal spin on the lessons. One campus kicked off the activities with a Google Hangout as a guest speaker, a graduate of Northside's Clark High School, age 20, described the app he designed for smartphones. Another campus is buddying up kindergarten students with a 5th grade mentor to facilitate participation. Each campus has students participating in the activities in their own, unique way, through the menu of activities provided. All students benefit from learning about computational thinking through coding! Even a student who isn't going to be a computer programmer will benefit from understanding the process of how to make a computer carry out instructions.

Check out some of the early activities!

 

McAndrew ES Aue ES Google Hangout at Carnahan
McAndrew ES Aue ES Google Hangout at Carnahan
 
Excitement!
Excitement!