Fifth graders at Cos Cob Elementary School are already familiar with their favorite video games, apps and the internet, but Monday’s “Hour of Code” gave them their first lesson on the basics of the computer programming that is behind their favorite gadgets.
Kate Dzikiewicz of the Bruce Museum came to the Cos Cob School’s Innovation Space to teach the building blocks of coding and the importance of learning it at a young age.
“We’re living in a society where technological literacy is becoming more and more of our everyday life,” Dzikiewicz said. “A lot of people only consume media and they use apps and they use smartphones, but they really don’t have an idea of how it works.”
Students were taught how to animate the spelling of their names using a program called Scratch, which allows them to drag blocks of code to make their program respond to their coding commands.
“Since 2013, around 200 million students across the world have done the hour of code. That’s in over 180 different countries and in over 40 different languages.”
Dzikiewicz, the Bruce Museum Science Department’s first Paul Griswold Howes Fellow, is a paleontologist, and she says coding is being used in all types of science.
“Paleontologists use code. It’s not just computer programmers that use code. We develop coding programs so that we can build 3D models of dinosaur bones. We’ve already made this program where we can plug in the different traits of dinosaurs and find out how they are related. All sorts of different people use coding. Whether you want to be a scientist or a computer programmer or even an artist, there are all sorts of ways you can use code.”
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