I hope that you had the opportunity to participate in the Hour of Code as part of the Computer Science Education Week. If you didn’t, it wouldn’t be for lack of resources! There were better resources, offering more engaging experiences this year than ever.
I truly hope that it doesn’t stop there for you and your students. I hope that you experienced the learning alongside your students and didn’t ship the class off to some one else who did the hour for you. If that was the case, you missed the point.
The one hour activities are nice and they’re there designed for a purpose – to start people on the journey. I hope that the journey continues and that the experience wasn’t just a “one of” thing.
When I look back at my educational experience, I took courses in English, Mathematics, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Physical Education, Music, Art, History, Geography, and French.
As it turns out, I didn’t become an author, mathematician, scientist, professional athlete, musician, artist, historian, cartographer, or translator. But I can name a classmate who fell into each of these professions.
With this logic, I really don’t want anyone to buy into the idea that doing the Hour of Code will somehow turn out the next generation of programmers. It could but just like I can write a paragraph in two languages, play baseball, do mental mathematics when shopping, the real goal should be to develop problem solving skills. The computer and programming languages of the future haven’t been invented yet but there’s a real advantage in being able to use the concepts of computational thinking to solving problems and also to tame that device that’s in their backpack.
Integrated properly, the skills of the past week can be developed into an integral way of doing everything. If you haven’t read Jim Cash’s post 5 ways to turn the ‘hour of code’ into the ‘year of learning’ you really should. I truly hope that your classroom continues to experience success in the weeks to come.
Are you ready to share your experiences and learning? Then, join the #ECOOchat on Tuesday evening. We’re hoping that it turns into a great opportunity to share, make connections, and take a look to the future.