Sun Terrace Technology Times

A monthly newsletter of tech tips, tricks and resources.

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What we are working on in K-2

February begins our final unit which brings us into the world of Scratch Jr! Students will be introduced to ScratchJr as a new programming tool and to two concepts that will create a foundation for understanding computer science and programming: instructions and sequencing. They will learn to create sequences of the same motion block (e.g., left, left, left) and to use number inputs to reduce the number of blocks needed. They will also learn to create sequence using a variety of motion blocks.


Resources for you:

Scratch Jr Activity Cards

Scratch Jr Block Descriptions

Scratch Jr Chrome App

Official Scratch Jr Book


The standards we are working on are:

  • CSTA 1A-CS-01: Select and operate appropriate software to perform a variety of tasks, and recognize that users have different needs and preferences for the technology they use.
  • CSTA 1A-AP-10: Develop programs with sequences and simple loops, to express ideas or address a problem.


All lessons and resources used can be found at K-2 Computer Science Curriculum.

What we are working on in grade 3.

This month students will complete an Scratch Jr program that ties into our Wonders unit about endangered animals. They will use the concepts they have learned in past lessons about event blocks, speeck blocks and the concept of "wait time" to write their program

Students will also learn about the concept of looping through both unplugged and programming-based activities. In the unplugged lesson, students will perform a simple dance using directions that have repeated commands. As a class, we will revise the directions to include loops.


Resources for you:

Scratch Jr Activity Cards

Scratch Jr Block Descriptions

Scratch Jr Chrome App

Official Scratch Jr Book


The standards we are working on are:

  • CSTA 1A-CS-01: Select and operate appropriate software to perform a variety of tasks, and recognize that users have different needs and preferences for the technology they use.
  • CSTA 1A-AP-09: Model the way programs store and manipulate data by using numbers or other symbols to represent information.
  • CSTA 1A-AP-10: Develop programs with sequences and simple loops, to express ideas or address a problem.


All lessons and resources used can be found at K-2 Computer Science Curriculum.

What we are working on in 4-5

This month students will be finishing their About Me interactive collage in Scratch representing their personal interests while furthering their knowledge and understanding of the various blocks used in Scratch programming.

They will also be learning about loops with a fun and active unplugged activity that will get them up and dancing, and then with a series of maze puzzles involving looping sequences in Code Studio.


Resources for you:

Maze Loops Teaching Guide

Code Studio 2 Artist Loops

Scratch cards


The standards we are working on are:

  • CSTA 1B-AP-10: Create programs that include sequences, events, loops, and conditionals.

  • CSTA 1B-AP-11: Decompose problems into smaller, manageable subproblems to facilitate the program development process.

  • CSTA 1B-AP-16: Take of varying roles, with teacher guidance, when collaborating with peers during the design, implementation, and review stages of program development.

  • CSTA 1B-AP-18: Discuss computing technologies that have changed the world, and express how those technologies influence, and are influenced by, cultural practices.




All lessons and resources can be found at 3-5 Computer Science Curriculum

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Watch Youtube videos without distractions in a family-friendly environment

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  • To register for a webinar, click on the title. Then click "Show in my Time Zone" to view the time of the webinar.

  • If you are unable to join live, register. All registrants receive an email with the webinar recording the day after the live webinar.

“Sprint” sessions are quick, just 10 minutes and focused on one topic!
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SeeSaw Activites!

Now you can easily create and share activities for your students to complete in Seesaw on iOS and the web. Get inspired with grade-level specific activities from our library, or create your own!
https://youtu.be/YkshBgjWJgE

Caption This!

Super fun activity using Google Slides or Drawings that get your students annotating, captioning, commenting and critically thinking about images. Older kiddos can do this themselves on chromebooks. Younger kiddos can do this in groups or on paper with sticky notes. Check it out SO much fun and TONS of critical thinking. Let me know if you want to try it out with your class and want an extra pair of hands =)

Code.org FREE Online Professional Development

Teaching Computer Science Fundamentals is intended as an introduction to computer science fundamentals and the Code.org K-5 resources for teachers. Through reading, viewing videos, completing interactive puzzles and reflecting on your learning, you'll develop your own understanding while preparing to teach computer science in your classroom.

Learning Objectives
Through completing this online course, participants will:

  • Learn the basics of computer science
  • Review best practices for teaching these basics to your students
  • Access free curriculum and resources for teachers
  • Plan for how you might get started teaching Computer Science Basics
  • Connect with a community of fellow educators who are making positive change in their classrooms through coding

Pre-requisites
No previous experience with coding or computer science education is assumed. This is a beginner's course. To check it out click on the button below!

Thanks for reading! Hope you found the resources useful.

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Please feel free to contact me anytime.