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Divide and conquer

This activity provides a mathematical problem that is solved in a simple way. It relates to the way algorithms are used in search engines and links to problem solving in maths. The context is that of Santa trying to find his socks in one of 1024 boxes, which a...

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...

Graph paper programming

The video explains the purpose of the activity which is to help students understand the principles behind coding. This is an unplugged activity meaning that students understand the computing principles without the use of a computer. By programming one another to draw pictures, students begin to understand what...

Scratch Music Machine

Music Machine is designed as a simple introductory program for children aged 7-8. Students create four simple buttons which play different sounds when they are clicked with the left mouse button.

If they have time, they can create their own extra buttons. Computer science concepts include using a mouse click...

Ed Armitage Explains Functions Procedures

In this video, a software engineer working on warehouse operations at Ocado, talks about his role.

He then explains functions - how they are used to abstract blocks of code that will be reused.

Real-life comparisons, such as walking across the classroom, are made - these help children to understand...

Ana Discusses Repeat Until and Repeat While Functions

In this video, a product owner at Ocado describes her role and how she uses data to plan efficient delivery routes.

She also describes how Repeat Until and Repeat While commands can be used to make programs repeat an unknown number of times.

Chris and Matt Introduce if Statements

In this video, two senior software engineers at Ocado explain how top-secret algorithms help in automated warehouses.

They also describe IF statements, and how important they are in all computer programs. They compare their use to examples in the real world.

Helen Explains if else Statements

A software engineer at Ocado explains her role and how it links to the Rapid Router system. She also explains if-else statements for making choices, and links them to real-life decision making such as crossing the road.

The video can help children begin to understand careers in software engineering.

Will Discusses Variables

In this video, a team leader at Ocado technology explains his role managing a programming team.

He also explains variables, and how they are used in programs. He uses examples in the real-world, linked to variables in the Rapid Router software, to explain how variables are used in control technology.

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