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You Do WHAT in Kindergarten? Coding Club

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CodeKinderarten

This year I have had the amazing opportunity to participate in a few Voxer groups that have given me the nudge to pursue coding at my school.  With great mentorship from Adam Welcome and Dr. Brad Gustafson I was able to really wrap my head around-do kindergartners really have the ability to code?  

In January of 2016 we started a ‘Coding Club’.  For 6-8 weeks I will get the opportunity to work with small groups of students during the day using a variety of technology tools to develop our skills in the following:

By learning to code and operate robots we will be able to:

  • Create solutions for problems
  • Collaborate with each other
  • Develop visual spatial skills (the ability to mentally orientate, manipulate, track and rotate robots)
  • Reflect on our learning
  • Read and interpret visual information
  • Demonstrate the safe and cooperative use of technology.
  • Independently apply digital tools and resources to address a variety of tasks and problems.
  • Communicate about technology using developmentally appropriate and accurate terminology

In order to get this all up and running I needed to secure:

  • Space (play centers when not in use)
  • Materials (we have 6 Spheros and a ‘Hive’ of Beebots as well as 6 iPads and a cart soon to come).
  • Parent communication (we are adding a section to our blog https://packersintraining.wordpress.com/ for parents to watch our progress).
  • Connection with current programs (we ran by our vocabulary with current VEX Robotic Coaches at our Intermediate, Middle and High School)
  • A tentative lesson plan format and focus for the week.  I also identified ISTE Standards as well as Minnesota Kindergarten Standards for linkage back to classroom learning.
  • STUDENTS!  Teachers are working right now to identify a few students that might enjoy developing a Spark in computer science, programing and collaborating with their peers.

My hope is to have a mini open house during conferences so parents can ‘see’ what we are doing.  So to answer the question-YES we are Coding in Kindergarten!

Keep Dreaming BIG for our Littlest Learners,

Jessica

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Jessica has been the Principal of the Woodson Kindergarten Center for the past four years.  Prior to that she was the Assistant Principal at the Middle School and Special Education Supervisor at the Secondary Level for the Austin Public Schools in Austin MN.  Prior to moving to Austin she worked within the Saint Paul Public Schools for seven years.  She received a Bachelors in Music Therapy from the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, a Masters Degree in Special Education from Saint Thomas University in Saint Paul MN, and her Director of Special Education and Principalship licenses from Hamline University.  


 

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Guest Monday, 05 December 2016