Reid 1st Graders Join the Global “Hour of Code”

Reid 1st Gr Code BANN

The ‘Hour of Code™’ is a global initiative to introduce millions of students to one hour of computer science and computer programming. It has become a worldwide effort to celebrate computer science, starting with 1-hour coding activities but expanding to all sorts of community efforts. Mark Zuckerberg, co-founder of Facebook, said, “In fifteen years, we’ll be teaching programming just like reading and writing and wondering why we didn’t do it sooner.” Middletown Area School District isn’t waiting 15 years.

The coding bug was first caught at MAHS and quickly spread to MAMS and Fink which you can read about HERE. So when Reid first grade teachers, Mrs. Pronesti and Mrs. Eppley, heard about the global “Hour of Code” initiative being held the week of December 4-10, 2017, they challenged their 5 and 6 year olds to become coders! The challenge was accepted and conquered! 

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Joey demonstrates how he selects and organizes specific commands to make his creature move in a desired path.

The young learners who have been raised on cell phones, tablets, computers and video games, easily adapted to code language and were quickly completing simple programming tasks. On classroom iPads, students were presented with challenges such as programming a critter to follow a specific pathway to reach an end goal such as food. The first graders entered 100s of lines of code to carry out specific tasks. One student who finds regular classroom learning and instruction a challenge, was able to excel at coding because it was a “language” he understood and had experience with in his technology-filled life. Mrs. Pronesti and Mrs. Eppley were dumbfounded at the progress of their students and how masterfully their students built lines of code.

In addition to programming, the Hour of Code initiative also challenges students to tackle “unplugged” activities that do not use a computer. For their first project, the first graders worked with Mrs. Moore’s 5th graders to build a ramp out of paper that could successfully roll a marble. In their second challenge, 1st graders worked in pairs to build a structure out of gumdrops and toothpicks that would successfully hold a paperback book. The goal was to be persistent no matter how many times their structures failed.

The coding bug has been caught at MASD. And it’s spreading from school to school like a contagious virus!

HourOfCode COLL

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