Learning to think with Code.org

"Everybody should learn to code 
because it teaches you how to think"
-Steve Jobs 

As a technology teacher who has taught coding for years, I couldn't agree with Steve Jobs' comments more. There's no doubt that teaching students HTML, CSS, Javascript, Ruby and Python so that they may create dynamic, interactive web sites, apps etc. are examples of thinking visibly personified.  But in a world of instant gratification, how do you get students excited about a process of learning that many students (but not all) view as time consuming and laborious?  Well, thanks to the star power of people named Will.i.am, Drew, Bill, Elena, Chris, Mark and Gabe, coding is now on everyone's radar and get this, coding is cool! Haven't seen the promotional video yet? Here's the 60 second teaser for Code.org:


Code.org is a one-stop shop of on-line resources to teach students, both young and old, how to code.  For elementary students,  be sure to check out a video about Scratch and after watching the video, try Scratch by downloading it for free. Also for the younger set, try Robologic (iOS) and Lightbot (Android), which are programs in which the user drags commands to move a robot.  Codecademy is a web-based learning environment which offers 'Tracks', which are a series of courses which have been grouped to help the user master topics or languages that include Web Fundamentals, PHP, JavaScript, Python and Ruby.  For those not quite ready to dive directly into these courses, there's Kidsruby. For high school students, there's CodeHS. CodeHS is a site which will introduce you to programming. It is built for complete beginners, and you learn by watching videos, working in the browser, and then getting help and feedback from real people who know the material. CodeHS is the easiest way to start a programming class at a high school. All the materials and teacher support are provided, so the teacher doesn't even have to be a programmer.  While everyone can try the trial for free, additional modules come at a cost and depending on whether you are a basic or premium member will determine the level of support you will receive.

Code.org offers multiple entry points into the world of programming, all in one place.  So, if you aren't sure where to start with programming or are looking for where to go next, a visit to Code.org should be your next step.

"Great coders are today's rock stars. That's it." - will.i.am.

"The programmers of tomorrow are the wizards of the future.  You are going to look like you have magic powers compared to everyone else" 
- Gabe Newell, Valve video game developer

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