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Hour of Code

Page history last edited by Nick Schiner 3 years, 10 months ago




 What is the HOC?  How do I Host an HOC?  How can I get my students excited for HOC? 

 What activities are available? 


Unplugged   Connected

How do we advertise our HOC?   How can we celebrate our students?



What is the Hour of Code?

     The Hour of Code is a one-hour introduction to computer science designed to demystify "code", to show that anybody can learn the basics.  Coding is an  important 21st century skill that helps students develop logic and problem solving skills while encouraging creativity. The Hour of Code takes place each year during Computer Science Education Week. The 2016 Computer Science Education Week will be December 5-11, but you can host an Hour of Code all year round.  The Hour of Code is designed so that everyone can participate! There is no age limit and in most cases you don't even need to pre-plan anything!  




How Do I Host an Hour of Code? 



1- Plan how you will do your Hour of Code. When will students do their Hour of Code? Will students work in pairs, groups, individually?  

2- Pick a tutorial.  Will you engage them with an unplugged activity or connected activity?  We encourage you to practice your selected activity before your students.  
3- Do your hour of code!  






How can I get my students excited for the Hour of Code? 











What Activities Can I Choose From?


Unplugged Activities



Connected Activities




Unplugged Activities

 These no tech options allow students to work on logic and command skills without a device.

Abstract Thinking

  • Spy Decoder- It is important to know that computers use a "different" language than we do.  In this activity, students use a spy decoder to send a receive secret messages.  You can use this Printable Decoder if you do not wish to create you own.


  • Walking an Algorithm- A algorithm is a step by step set of operations needed to reach a goal.  In this activity, students are given step by step directions to find a hidden treasure.
  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar Coding Activity- In this activity, students draw directional arrows to guide the Hungy Hugry Caterpillar to his food, to his cocoon, and finally his butterfly form.
  • Graph Paper Programming- In this activity, students use graph paper to write algorithms to instruct a friends to color a blank grid to match theirs. 


  • Program with Paper: Directions through a maze- A computer program is a list of instructions or commands that tell a computer what to do.  In this activity, students use commands and graph paper to guide a friend through a maze.
  • Superhero Computer Coding- Help superheros find their way through this maze using post-it notes and directional arrows.
  • Color by Pixel- In this activity students use graph paper and follow a set of commands to create colorful cartoons.

Binary Code

  • Binary Puzzles- Binary code is the "language" of computers.  Using special place values and 0s and 1s we can write commands for the computer to follow.  In this activity, students use graph paper to illustrate binary code to draw some interesting creations.
  • Binary Baubles- In this activity students listen to a series of commands and match the commands to the language of binary code in order to decode a hidden message. 

If...Then... Statements 

  • "Computer Says" Large Motor Movement Coding- If Then is what is called a conditional statement in programing.  If one condition exists, then the program commands the computer to do something.  In this activity, students practice responding to If...then.. commands.




Connected Activities

 These high tech options provide students self-guided tutorials and allow them to utilize the power of their device to code a computer program.


Activities for Beginning Students



Using a series of commands your goal is to program Lightbot to light up all of the blue squares in the game. 




In this self guided hour of code, students work to create commands which will help the bird catch the pig through the ClassicMaze.



Students use coding blocks to command their character to do and find certain things in the Minecraft world.


Link for lesson tile: http://lightbot.com/hour-of-code-2015-flash.html Link for lesson tile: https://studio.code.org/hoc/1  Link for lesson tile: https://studio.code.org/s/mc/stage/1/puzzle/1 



In this activity students use Tynker to give commands to their character.   



 Using a series of picture blocks students navigate the Foos to collect as many coins as possible.


Students use coding blocks to help Elsa and Anna move around the Frozen world of Arendelle.

Link for lesson tile: https://hourofcode.com/tynkercq 

Link for lesson tile: http://thefoos.com/webgl/ 

(Students should not enter an email address, simply select the "x" to move on)

Link for lesson tile: https://studio.code.org/s/frozen/stage/1/puzzle/1 


In this beginner activity students use directional arrows to program a path for the "bot" to get home.



In this activity students using coding blocks and a variety of shapes to create a snowflake.

 Students use coding blocks to follow or create their own unique dances moves.

Link for lesson tile: http://botlogic.us/play Students should select "I'm a Player" Link for lesson tile: https://santatracker.google.com/snowflake.html   Link for lesson tile: https://santatracker.google.com/codeboogie.html  





Activities for Students Comfortable with Coding




In this guided activity, students use CoffeeScript to help the monkey catch his bananas and save the world!




Using a version of Scratch, students will design their name and then add animation to each letter.




Using a version of Scratch, students will design a character and learn how to make it fly. 


Link for lesson tile:  https://hourofcode.com/como Link for lesson tile: https://hourofcode.com/scratchanim Link for lesson tile: https://hourofcode.com/scratchfly






How Can I Advertise Our Hour of Code?


Send Emails 

Tell parents about your school's event:


Dear Parents,

     We live in a world surrounded by technology. And we know that whatever field our students choose to go into as adults, their ability to succeed will increasingly depend on understanding how technology works.  But only a tiny fraction of us are learning how technology works. Fewer than half of all schools teach computer science.

     That’s why our entire school is joining in on the largest learning event in history: The Hour of Code, during Computer Science Education Week (December 5-11). More than 100 million students worldwide have already tried an Hour of Code.

     Our Hour of Code is making a statement that [SCHOOL NAME] is ready to teach these foundational 21st century skills. To continue bringing programming activities to your students, we want to make our Hour of Code event huge. I encourage you to volunteer, reach out to local media, share the news on social media channels and consider hosting additional Hour of Code events in the community.  This is a chance to change the future of education in [TOWN/CITY NAME].

     See http://hourofcode.com/us for details, and help spread the word.


Your principal



Photos, screenshots, student reactions, etc.


Be sure to tag @BCPSODL and @hourofcode


We are using #bcpscodes



Register your event with www.code.org  






How Can We Celebrate our Students? 




Print on Avery 6450 



Blank Certificates

Customizable Certificates








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