Think computer science is only for an elite group of professionals? An Hour of Code could change your mind – and inspire your students!
Join more than 41,000 U.S. schools, libraries, and other organizations to celebrate Computer Science Education Week this year by hosting hour-of-code events from December 5 to 11. (Get how-to details here.)
The “largest learning event in history,” which marks the birthday of computer pioneer Grace Hopper, includes Star Wars-based tutorials for beginners as young as four, inspiring videos about learning computer science, fun Minecraft adventures that children can program using smart phones or tablets, and even “unplugged”Hour of Code activities for people without a computer or Internet connection. New this year: a free Minecraft tutorial that lets beginning coders create and share simple versions of the popular game while enhancing their problem-solving skills.
No computer science teacher at your school? Edhesive offers a free AP Computer Science massive, open online course (MOOC). It’s one of 14 providers of curriculum, classroom tutorials, and platforms for teaching computer science to kids that you can integrate in your lessons.
Seek more information? The September 2013 eGFI Teachers newsletter focuses on computer engineering activities, as does the eGFI Teachers blog post with computer science education resources.
Meanwhile, states are moving to adopt new computer science education standards based on the K-12 Computer Science Framework. According to the Atlantic magazine. Arkansas, Indiana, and Florida have made major computer-science pushes at the K-12 level, as have cities like New York and Chicago. California is moving to create its own standards, as are Virginia, South Carolina, and Washington state.
Download the full standards or get tips for integrating computer science into literacy, math, and science instruction from the Computer Science Teachers Association, which developed the standards.