Spreadsheets have been dismissed by some people as boring, old hat, and about “only” office skills. Those people are wrong! In this article I look at how you can use spreadsheets to start teaching children about some programming concepts.Read More
Is 'making' really an effective -- or cost-effective -- way of learning programming? Guest contributor Derek Blunt has his doubts.Read More
"I wonder if it's possible to write a poem about coding", I thought to myself. Well, it is, and here it is. First Chaucer, then Shakespeare, and now me. No doubt schoolchildren of the future will be studying this for their Eng Lit exams, but in the meantime you can read it here first! Enjoy.Read More
Should you start with the raw components when teaching coding, or get the kids problem-solving immediately? This article argues in favour of the latter.Read More
To borrow from Mark Twain, reports of the death of Visual Basic for Applications as a viable programming language to teach in schools are exaggerated.Read More
Managed – and, I think, written by – Lawrence Williams, the website contains examples of pupils’ work in Scratch, cross-curricular ideas and examples, and notes on pedagogy.
An advantage of J2Code as a whole over 2Code is that it covers the age range from Key Stage 1 (5-6 year olds) to Key Stage 3 (13-14 year olds).
I like a challenge so I thought I’d try to create a self-marking spreadsheet in Excel. (Look, some men like fast cars, some like sport, and some like womanising. Me? I like spreadsheets. OK?)
Perhaps some of your students will be tempted, when designing a computer program for use by non-technical people, to make it as ‘proactively helpful’ as possible. If so, they should beware. A good idea would be to undertake some market research, if only of a rudimentary nature, to avoid the pitfall of merely annoying people.
“My congratulations to you, Sir. Your manuscript is both good and original; but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good.”
I thought it might be interesting to look at 10 ideas that have gained popularity in the world of educational technology and ICT in recent years, to see if they meet the “good and original" test”. Here are my considered, though possibly opinionated, views.
Lord Puttnam said something every interesting at an E-Learning Foundation Conference. Having been a film producer, he said that up to about ten years ago, to be a successful cinematographer you had to be able to take a camera apart and put it together. Now, none of those sort of skills are required: you need a whole different set of skills in order to find employment in that occupation.
I believe a similar thing is true in the realm of “digital education”. Almost nobody needs a gasp of computer programming, and even fewer need to know how computers actually work.