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VEX IQ - exploring Modkit blocks

This resource for VEX IQ Modkit helps students to understand the basic principles of using blocks of code to create a programme. The Modkit blocks have been reproduced so that they can be printed and used by students for discussion and when planning their code. This resource contains a classroom presentation...

Life in a Can

A cross-curricular resource for primary and lower secondary schools that investigates life and how it can be maintained in the harsh atmosphere of space.

The engineers and scientists who built the International Space Station are faced with huge challenges - everything needed to keep astronauts alive must be...

Session Four: General Solution Using Repeat until and if...do...

This Rapid Router lesson uses the Blockly language to develop ideas about selection, repetition, and conditionals. Children progress from specific instructions to spot patterns that can be made into generalised solutions. This important step helps learning about abstraction and pattern generalisation, two...

Abstraction Unplugged

This short activity for primary school computing uses art to introduce the concept of abstraction. During a ‘guess what’ game the children are asked to represent a word on a card using drawing or modelling – in doing so they unconsciously concentrate on just the most important aspects of the idea they are...

Dinosaur Fossil Animation Sequence Activity

This Barefoot Computing animation project for primary school computing teaches the concept of sequencing within programs. Children use costumes and a range of commands in Scratch to produce purposeful multimedia. They are encouraged to debug and improve the program, and can extend the challenge by recording sound...

Logical Number Sequences Activity

Combining maths and computational thinking, this Barefoot Computing activity for upper primary uses linear number sequences to introduce algorithms in computing. Children work collaboratively to apply logical thinking and pattern recognition - key concepts used across the Barefoot Computing project. While using...

2D Shape Drawings Activity: an Introduction to Debugging Algorithms

This Barefoot Computing activity for upper primary goes deeper into the concept of algorithms, using logical reasoning and debugging to find errors and to improve accuracy and efficiency. By following instructions, children create diagrams constructed from simple shapes. They are asked to identify errors in the...

What is Simulation?

This guide sheet from the Barefoot project explains simulation for the benefit of teachers, including what it is and why it is used. The use of simulations in the primary computing curriculum is explained, with links to the National Curriculum in each primary school key stage. The guide links to, and supports, a...

Computational Thinking Approaches

Five guides for teachers that help them develop classroom practice to encourage computational thinking. The approaches covered include:

*Tinkering - trying things out

*Creating - planning, making and evaluating things

*Debugging - finding out why things don't happen exactly as you want...

Shapes and Crystal Flowers Activity

A cross-curricular programming activity, using loops in Scratch to draw patterns. Learners first design an algorithm to draw a simple 2D shape, and then use the 'repeat' block to generate artwork. It is advised that children have some prior experience of programming in Scratch. Experimentation and debugging is...

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