Lesson Plan

Introduction to coding for grades K-1

Introduces coding terminology/concepts to students using Code.Org Course 1
Nathan P.
Classroom teacher
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My Grades 6
My Subjects English Language Arts, Math, Social Studies
EdTech Mentor

Students will be able to...

Identify/use computer science vocabulary.

Analyze and create a set of directions to get a character to a predetermined location.

Communicate using symbols and diagrams.

Grades K - 1
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Hoot/Attention Getter

Make sure you have registered in advance on Code.org and have enrolled your students into Course 1.

Discuss what the students think "coding" and "computer science" are/means.

Play the video on the main page for the students to get them excited/introduced to computer science.

Student Instructions

Discuss "coding" and "computer science"

Watch the video

2 Vocabulary introduction

Activity: Conversing

Introduce the new vocabulary:

Algorithm - a list of steps to get something done.

Discuss with students what type of everyday activities they do might be considered algorithms ( steps that they follow in the same order to get something done) like brushing their teeth, putting on a jacket, etc.

Student Instructions

Discuss everyday algorithms

3 Creating an algorithm together

Activity: Creating

Tell the students that you are going to be a computer and they are going to be the coders.  They will have to create a list of steps for you to follow to get something done.  This can be to get to the board to draw something, get to the window to open/close it, get to the door to open/close it, etc.

Have the students give you the first step.  Follow the directions exactly.  (If the students tell you to walk straight, keep walking until you get to the wall)  Explain to the students that as a computer, you listen to directions exactly and that they need to give precise/specific direction.  Continue to ask for directions to get your goal accomplished.  Along the way, point out great ideas for the directions like "move straight 3 steps" that make it easy to understand and an exact location/distance is given.

When done, go through the algorithm and go through all the steps needed.  Explain to the students that a computer cannot read the minds of the coders and will do exactly what it is told so coders need to think how to make their programs simple and to the point.

Student Instructions

Give precise/specific directions to accomplish the goal.

4 Guided Practice

Activity: Creating

Spit the students into groups.  Have one student in each group pretend to be the computer and the rest be the coders.  have the coders decide what they want their computer to do (a simple task in the room) and create an algorithm for the computer to follow.  The computer is to follow the directions exactly and see if the coders are giving good enough directions.  Students can take turns being the computer/coders.

Student Instructions

Create algorithms for easy, in class tasks.

5 Wrap Up/Extend

Discuss/review algorithms.

Discuss/review with the students that the coders need to make sure they are giving precise directions to make it easier for the computer to follow.

Pass out the login information for the students for Code.org and have the students log in.

Have the students work through the puzzles at their own pace.

Student Instructions

Discuss/review algorithms.

Log into code.org and solve puzzles.