CodeCombat would make a great platform for a full-year computer science course or an after-school, game-based code club. Because the game focuses on play to learn coding, teachers will need to find students motivated by the idea of battling knights and ogres. And because the game emphasizes doing, rather than rote memorization and programming concepts, teachers will need to be prepared to build assessments around the curriculum and help students as they learn how to master the code -- and the game. As players get more advanced, they can learn to create and share their own levels, offering long-term motivation and development for burgeoning game programmers.Continue reading Show less
CodeCombat is an adventure game and curriculum that teaches kids coding fundamentals. Whether they're stuck in a dungeon surrounded by enemies or racing across a battlefield prepared to conquer a foe, CodeCombat puts players into the action. There are tons of levels and multiple courses including Computer Science 1-5, Game Development, and Web Development. Along with an individual version for home, the classroom version for schools allows teachers to select courses and monitor progress, as well as access a number of curriculum guides, lesson plans, cheat sheets, and more. Other features include clans, student-created games, and multiplayer arenas.
CodeCombat's "play first" approach gets kids gaming long before it occurs to them they might want to learn a little programming. Fundamentally a game played by writing code, the site never feels like code school. Instead, the code works like a magical language, where properly formatted incantations animate the on-screen characters. While many educational games have tried to make learning more fun, this is a game in which the real challenge is to make fun more educational.
The CodeCombat community has been expanding resources for teachers and learners. The teacher dashboard, curriculum guides, progress journals, and activities go a long way to scaffolding learning. The open-source community has also provided a number of translations to meet student needs. Teachers would do well to check out this site to see an educational game done the right way.
Key Standards Supported
Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks, attending to special cases or exceptions defined in the text.
Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks; analyze the specific results based on explanations in the text.
Key Standards Supported
Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions.
Evaluate competing design solutions using a systematic process to determine how well they meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
Analyze data from tests to determine similarities and differences among several design solutions to identify the best characteristics of each that can be combined into a new solution to better meet the criteria for success.