The Hour of Code is a global movement reaching tens of millions of students in 180 countries. It is part of Computer Science and Education week, the single largest educational event in the world. At Green Vale, Grades K through 3rd and 5th and 6th participate through a different month-long coding program for each grade. Many of the coding tools such as Tynker, code.org and Kahoot involve games, puzzles or building/design applications where the students learn a language or syntax of commands and break down a desired end goal into a sequence of steps. Students then segue into robotics where they leverage prior knowledge of coding to program robots.
In 6th Grade "info" class, a combination of technology and library, teachers Julie Rooney and Karenn Ressa devoted several class periods to an application where students program an animated figure to dance. "The basis of coding is logical thinking and it requires attention to detail," says Rooney. "A comma in the wrong place and the program will not run." Students have to carefully apply instructions, form estimates, and find the solution to move to the next level, offering an exercise in problem-solving and trial-and-error. Rooney emphasized that "we are really trying to develop students' comfort level and confidence with coding skills."