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Unplugged starter activity for waterfall methodology

Understanding the key development methodologies is an important part of most A-level specifications. This is a great activity to engage the students at the start of the topic, as no prior knowledge is required. This resource needs to be cut out and laminated. Ideally, each waterfall step should be separated, along...

Hardware-inside the computer

This is a set of resources for students aged between 11 and 13, focusing on the internal components of a computer. The main presentation introduces the topic and contains links to external resources. Students are challenged to create storyboards and short stories to retell how the components work together. The...

CPU worksheet

This worksheet is aimed at GCSE students aged 14 - 16. It is best used as a plenary activity at the end of the unit, after the students have been introduced to the fetch-decode-execute cycle and simple assembly code. Alternatively, the resource could be used as a home-learning task or an end of topic assessment....

Fetch-decode-execute-plot

This is an unplugged resource to simulate the fetch-decode-execute cycle in a processor. It is a frantic starter activity aimed at students aged 17-18. The teacher acts as the computer memory, passing out instructions to the students. The students take on three different roles, fetcher, decoder and executer.  At...

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...

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.

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