Hour of Code
We use Hour of Code across our academy in the majority of year groups.
Miss Hills, who is a Year 4 teacher, gives an example of how she uses it in her classroom:
Hour of Code has been a brilliant asset to have in our computing lessons, as some of the children find the Minecraft Education programming a bit difficult, however, the differentiated levels of difficulty in all of the Hour of Code challenges makes coding accessible to all of the pupils. Programming using Hour of Code engages every child in my class and creates a buzz of excitement as they move through the levels and create algorithms to program exciting tasks, such as programming a drone to pick up presents in The Grinch Hour or Code, which Year 4 loved close to Christmas!
All of the children enjoy playing computer games and the Hour of Code lessons are set out in the format of a competitive computer game, which interests and appeals to the children. Throughout the whole lesson, they can track their progress, working through the levels, which gradually increase in difficulty, by encouraging the children to program algorithms with more steps each time. This competitive element, not only promotes accurate and quick coding, essential to develop their overall computing competence, but it also gives them the opportunity to collaboratively work with their peers, encouraging discussions about the algorithms and offering peer support if their friends are finding a particular level difficult.
I have seen a lot of my children blossom with coding through Hour of Code, as it is very user friendly, with clear instructions for each level of programming. This has allowed the majority of children to independently work through the levels at their own pace, so that they can reach the end and show off their certificate on successfully completing each Hour of Code.
As well as the children being extremely passionate about participating in Hour of Code lessons, this software also gives teachers the confidence to deliver coding lessons, as all of the levels are broken down into step-by-step instructions, making it easy to follow, so that Hour of Code can be delivered by any teacher, regardless of their level of computing experience.