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Variables Unplugged

This activity away from the computer is from the Barefoot Computing project. It is intended to provide a theoretical understanding of why and how variables are used in computer programming, using the example of score-keeping in a classroom quiz. Involving several volunteers from the group, the activity uses...

Scratch Maths Quiz Variables

This Barefoot Computing resource builds on the ‘Maths quiz with selection’ learning activities which should be undertaken first.

It involves improving an existing Scratch maths quiz and adding score-keeping using variables – a quiz Scratch file is provided for students who do not have access to one they made...

Scratch Maths Quiz Selection

This Barefoot Computing resource for upper-primary computing lessons uses the creation of a Scratch maths quiz as a basis for learning about algorithms using selection.

Children are asked to create an algorithm that mirrors the quiz given orally by the teacher. Once they have developed the algorithm it is...

Decomposition Unplugged

This computing resource for primary schools introduces the concept of decomposition through dance. Using combinations of hand-jive, clapping or tutting, the lesson demonstrates how complex sequences of instructions (algorithms) can be broken down into smaller chunks. The children are challenged to look for patterns...

Scratch junior

ScratchJr is an introductory programming language that enables young students to create their own interactive stories and games. Students snap together graphical programming blocks to make characters move, jump, dance, and sing. Students can modify characters in the paint editor, add their own voices and sounds,...

Computational thinking

A comprehensive guide taken from the Quickstart guide to what computational thinking is and what it might look like in the primary classroom. It involves classroom activities which include:

  • Writing algorithms and looking for patterns (generalisations) in comparison to other students’ algorithms.
  • ...

Real-life algorithms: plant a seed

A lesson plan that takes the students through the algorithm to plant a seed. It consists mainly of a worksheet task to correctly sequence the steps in planting a seed, in doing so they must discard any superfluous information. The idea is then that they give their algorithm to another child for that child to follow...

Real-life algorithms: paper airplanes

A lesson plan that takes the students through the algorithm to making a paper airplane. It consists mainly of a worksheet task to correctly sequence the steps in making a paper airplane, in doing so they must discard any superfluous information. The idea is then that they give their algorithm to another child for...

Debugging system for students

A resource which provides learners with a user friendly strategy to utilise when they come across a bug they do not understand. SNOT stands for Self, Neighbour, Other, Teacher, and it includes a framework for recording who students have sought help from, and who they have helped along with record sheets to record...

Programming theory

A booklet containing lots of generic programming theory. The topics include:

  • What is a program?
  • High level languages and machine code
  • Design methodologies
  • Programming construct definitions
  • Program constructs exemplified in pseudocode (with several tasks to teach...

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