This year, in England, every child aged 5-16 will be taught coding as part of their curriculum, and similar programs are being rolled out in other European countries. Many teachers wonder how they have time to incorporate coding in the classroom, but the logic and problem solving skills involved in programming align themselves well to Science and Math programs of study, and creative educators are finding other outlets too. Besides, if Anna and Elsa are starting to code, you can too!
1. The Foos: Code for an Hour FREE
Aimed at students aged 6-8, The Foos is a great introduction to some basic programming skills. It is also accessible to all learners because of how visual it is. No reading skills are required. The app was created specifically for the hour of code with 24 levels and 3 sandbox areas for students to explore. It is 100% free with no in-app purchases. Click here to download The Foos.
2. LEGO MINDSTORMS: Fix the Factory
The Mindstorm robots are often high on children's wishlist come Xmas time, but the cost is prohibitive for many parents. Fix the Factory, on the other hand, is completely free! In this app, you guide your Mindstorm robot around the factory with a series of programmable directions and complete a variety of challenges. Great fun, and a brand kids recognize. Download it here.
3. Daisy the Dino
With an easy drag and drop interface, Daisy the Dino is a great introductory app for even the youngest students. Daisy can roll, jump, turn, spin and more at your behest if you use the right commands. It's intuitive, fun and the freeplay mode encourages more creativity once the challenges have been mastered. Download Daisy the Dino here.
4. Lightbot - One Hour of Coding '14
Lightbot does a great job of making coding fun, despite tacking more complex coding skills like loops and if-then statements. It comes complete with lesson plans, a rationale for educators, and a teacher answer book! This is another app that was created specifically for the hour of code. If you like it, be sure to check out the other versions of Lightbot. Click here to download.