Being a Technology Integration Coach, it is my responsibility to provide ideas and resources to staff at the +William Davies Middle School. In the middle of December it was Computer Science Education Week, so I approached the STEM and LMT teachers, Mrs. Green and Ms. Fitzgerald, about teaching computer programming to their 7th and 8th grade students. They were on board with the idea which allowed us to have about six classes participate in the Hour of Code movement, which introduces students K-12, to Computer Science.
During the week in December, I spoke with the participating teachers and provided them with resources and ideas to help promote computer programming in their classrooms.
Being a former computer programmer, I was very excited and could not wait to teach coding to the students in STEM class. I taught three classes how to program in HTML. I tried to incorporate simple and familiar concepts to them so they can make connections and comparisons.
They used a simple editor, such as Notepad to write their code in which they needed to save their file as a webpage. Then, they executed the program by double clicking on the file to see the results of their code. By the end of the week, they wrote a program that displayed a simple webpage that included, a page title, formatted text, a bullet list, an image, horizontal lines, and page breaks. In addition, students learned programming vocabulary, procedures to test and debug their code, and they learned how to collaborate with each other. Here is an image of a few concepts about the HTML lesson.
In LMT class, Ms. Fitzgerald had her students use a GUI application, such as Scratch, in which the students created an animated holiday card by using a drag and drop interface.
By the end of the week, students felt proud and took ownership in this topic. Here is a short video presentation I created to display the student's accomplishments.