Paper vs. Screens by Christine McDonnell, CEO at Codelicious

Guest post by Christine McDonnell, CEO at Codelicious

Traditional coding activities dictate that students sit in front of laptops or tablets, working to develop a program or a game. This approach, however, does not resonate with all types of students and learners. Luckily, there are many different ways to help students understand code. You may be able to remove devices to help reinforce key concepts.

Unplugged activities allow educators to teach coding away from laptops and tablets. This gives teachers the flexibility to engage all learning styles in the classroom. Furthermore, unplugged activities encourage teamwork, problem-solving, abstract thinking, and more. For example, Ms. Bersani, a STEAM teacher at Blue Academy Elementary School, used the Codelicious computer science curriculum to teach her fourth-grade students how to write their initials in binary code using beads and bracelets. This activity required students’ active participation to create a tangible final product. Students could visualize the outcome of binary code without sitting in front of a device.

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