Amazing Way to Spark Student Interest in Coding!
My overall opinion of code.org is that it is a fantastic tool for students of all ages to get started with and dig deeper into the basics of coding and computer science. My students were intimidated by coding at first but after going through the beginning level games and watching themselves grow and advance through different levels of games their confidence has increased exponentially. I like that there are many choices for students that include both tech and non-tech options to learning the basics of coding and programming. I like that the options are broken up by grade bands so that my students won't choose games that are way over their heads or way too easy. I like that there was a certificate at the end of the week that students could get a tangible reward to work for and to take home to share with their parents. I like the way that the code.org website features current, timely, relevant characters for the coding games like Star Wars, Disney and more. My students were highly motivated to learn to code using their favorite characters! I can't even think of a way that the tool could be better used. I love it! My students loved it! It was the spark that my students needed to ignite a flame of passion and excitement about computer science and using robotics in the classroom!
How I Use It
I used code.org during the hour of code to get my students interested in coding. My students loved playing the Frozen game and the Moana game. I just set a timer for about 10 minutes each day and let them choose the most interesting coding game on their own and progress through the levels. They learned the basics of what coding is- telling a computer to do something and have now been able to apply this knowledge to use robotics in our classroom. They are absolutely loving using coding to learn our core content area standards and it all started with us using code.org during Hour of Code back in December!