CS Education Week Kick-off

Hour of Code happens during Computer Science Education Week. So what is computer science? Computer Science is the study of computers and algorithmic processes, including their principles, their hardware and software designs, their applications, and their impact on society (Tucker et. al, 2006, p. 2).

How is computer science different than…
  • Computer literacy - general use of computers and programs, such as productivity software. (Ex. performing an Internet search and creating a digital presentation.)

  • Educational technology applies computer literacy to school subjects. (Ex. students in an English class can use a web-based application to collaboratively create, edit, and store an essay online.)

  • Digital citizenship refers to the appropriate and responsible use of technology, such as choosing an appropriate password and keeping it secure.

  • Information technology often overlaps with computer science but is mainly focused on industrial applications of computer science, such as installing software rather than creating it. Information technology professionals often have a background in computer science.

Coding Glossary: Helping students to learn and use the correct terminology will give them the tools to communicate efficiently, and give them the foundations to learn and grow. Some basic terms to know are blockly, bug, code, command, conditionals, crowd sourcing, debugging, event, loop, run, variable.

Go to code.org/learn. When you get to this website, you'll see several sections. Within each section, you will use the right/left arrows on the screen to navigate to choices within the section. You can also use the checkboxes on the left-hand side to filter your search. Although many of the activities are good, the ones listed on this websites and organized for age are the ones we'd highly recommend.

Hopefully you have a chance this week to see what computer science is all about, and get a chance to give it a try yourself!