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RISC vs CISC starter activity

This is quick starter activity for A-level students aged 17-18. The aim of the activity is to revise the key differences between RISC and CISC processors and to ensure students can explain which architecture should be used in a given situation.

Bernadette Malcolmson is the author of the resource.

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Traffic lights

Using sparkles to code flashing sequences. There are variations on difficulty including the introduction of switches.

Privacy debate kit

This resource focuses on the subject of privacy and provides an opportunity for a structured practice debate on a controversial topic. The different ‘rounds’ of the debate help students think through the issues and reconsider their opinions. The structure also shows them how to build a discussion and back up their...

Watching a Glacier (11-14)

This brief activity uses false-colour images of the Columbia glacier to introduce the idea of using sequences of satellite images to monitor change and focuses on the selection of appropriate data for an investigation.

Fireworks

An ideal lesson plan for the lead up to fireworks night! This is about making sparkles flash with random intervals and colours. It can also be made more difficult by using LDRs.

Christmas tree

An ideal plan for a Christmas themed coding lesson! This plan involves a Christmas tree that has sparkles lighting up as the baubles, but it is also possible to use other Christmas-related ideas (for example Christmas cards) that have the same code.

Constellation

Using sparkles to light the night sky. It is possible to make them ‘twinkle’ or use an LDR so they only light up in the dark.

Dice

The dice uses sparkles and a code to make them flash randomly. What is the probability of the same numbers being picked and does that mean it is truly random? It is also relevant here to think about nets and dice shape.

Lighthouse

This uses a motor, a sparkle and a marble to imitate a lighthouse. It can be made harder by incorporating LDRs.

Morse code

Very simply, this involves making sparkles flash. The challenge is to work out how long a ‘dot’ and a ‘dash’ are, and to successfully code a message in Morse code.

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