Every year schools around the world celebrate Computer Science (CS) Week by teaching an "Hour of Code" to their students. CS week was started to honor a famous computer scientist, Admiral Grace Hopper. Admiral Hopper served in the U.S. Navy and is widely known as one of the first computer programmers. This year Google connected with us during CS week to work with both our fourth and eighth graders.
In eighth grade, our students explored mobile app creation using code.org's app builder. In approximately 60 minutes, all students had basic functioning apps that could play sounds, change screens, and have students answer questions about various topics. Code.org also allowed the app to be shared to a mobile device to see how the app would look on a phone or tablet. After the lesson, the students got to ask our three visiting google engineers questions about current CS topics such as artificial Intelligence, data security, and overall computer privacy. The lesson was very memorable and engaging.
Students in the fourth grade classroom were able to participate in a Scratch project designed and hosted by Google. The Google engineers walked our students through the tutorial on coding a superhero. The only stipulation I gave students was that I was hoping they would create an animation that showcased an actual superhero in their lives. The students were able to seek advice and bounce ideas off of our guests. In the end, the fourth graders had a completed Scratch project and some new ideas to add to their next Scratch project.