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Computational thinking and algorithms

An unplugged activity to convert binary numbers into coordinates that enable students to recreate an image using values given in binary. The resource also includes a spreadsheet which can be used to make more complex images for use with students at a more advanced level. The presentation is more of a discussion of...

Making data digital

This resource looks at various ways at how digital images and sounds are quantified in such a way that the computer can store and interpret them. This looks at the effects of digitising different types of data, and the effect that this has on both the size and the quality of the resulting files. It may be necessary...

An introduction to computer science: algorithms in everyday life

This resource consists of a ten page student workbook and some associated resources. The workbook is designed to be used with Key Stage 3 students over a number of lessons, to introduce them to the concept of algorithms, to make them used to following instructions given as an algorithm and to start producing their...

The Intelligent Piece of Paper

In this activity from the CS4FN team, learners are introduced to algorithms in the context of artificial intelligence. They are challenged to beat a ‘piece of paper’ at a game of noughts and crosses. By following a simple algorithm, the piece of paper becomes very difficult to beat. The algorithm is a sequence of...

Inputs and Outputs of Design

Using the context of the Nintendo Wii, this starter activity develops an understanding of the terms system, input, process, output and signal, and asks students to identify these features in some common products which are shown in the presentation.

The activity, from the Institution of Engineering and...

Computer Games vs Sport

The activity allows the students to explore social, ethical, economic and health issues relating to the use of Nintendo Wii compared to doing real sports and present their findings in a persuasive, coherent and focused argument. Students identify arguments for and against the topic, researching information needed...

Beautiful Numbers

This lesson or enrichment activity investigates recursive algorithms using Fibonacci series.

It begins with an engaging maths magic trick ‘how to fake a super brain’ that uses a special property of Fibonacci numbers, and proceeds to look at the Golden Ratio in nature and its ‘beautiful’ properties.

...

Crazy Graphics

This workshop investigates how images are stored as data, and shows the difference that ‘bit depth’ makes to the quality of images and number of colours.

It begins by looking at paintings and how, using only paint, images were difficult to edit – however digital images are much easier. Pupils with access to...

Cryptography Workshop

This set of activities introduces children to cryptography techniques, showing how the use of computers can make encryption quicker and more effective. Some notable examples of the use of encryption in history are mentioned, leading to the use of calculation machines for code-making and code-breaking.

A...

Generating Art: Shape Calculator

This resource, intended for an extended workshop session, uses sequences of instructions for creating drawings as a basis for learning about algorithms. Following the activity (taken from the series CSUnplugged), an introductory look at Scratch explores the different parts of the program and would be suitable for...

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