All You Need Is...RESOURCES!! (Sometimes love helps as well)

Hello MS World!

Hope this discussion post finds you well. Being from Chicago, I am lamenting the loss of my beloved Chicago Cubs, but that’s really not related to CS, so back to the point…

I’m excited to share with you a timeline for October’s Discussion posts - I think it will hold me accountable to you AND allow you to have time to generate ideas so you can contribute to the discussion.

October’s discussion posts will be...drum roll please….RESOURCES!

Each of us are off and running in the school year, and last I checked, we need to teach our kids something about CS ;) It’s hard to hunt for resources to use in the midst of the school year when you have school meetings, grading, etc., so let’s help one another out with a brain dump of resources we use in our classrooms.

Resources is a BIG topic, so here’s how we’ll divvy the weeks:

1st week of Oct: Curriculum Resources

What resources do you use to generate the content for your day to day CS classes?  Is it a specific curriculum? Is it a hodge podge of great tools you’ve found? Is it a great YouTube channel? This could include videos, online tutorials, widgets, etc.

2nd week of Oct: Manipulatives  / Devices

What manipulatives / devices do you use in your CS classroom? Ozobots? Spheros? Makey Makey? Microbits? What has worked well?

3rd week of Oct: Computational Thinking Resources

What resources do you use to foster computational thinking in your CS classroom? Unplugged lessons? Specific activities?

4th week of Oct: CS Ed Week Resources:

What’s your plan for CS Ed week this year? What resources are you planning on using?

5th week of Oct: Success Stories

We’ll reserve the last week of each month to share success stories from our neck of the woods. That could be a successful lesson, a CS project that didn’t work out as well as you would have hoped, but that you learned a ton from, or a student story. It’s hard enough to teach CS - we need success stories to keep us going!

There’s a lot of gray in the area of resources, so don’t feel like you can’t share a resources if it doesn’t fit neatly into one of the boxes I’ve made. Those categories are just to help get the conversation going.

Here’s what I need you to share in the discussion this week:

Share some of the curricular resources you use to come up with the content for your day to day CS classes. Do you use a specific curriculum or website? Which ones? 

The majority of my 5th grade CS classes have a combination of lessons from Code.org’s Fundamentals Express Course and CS Unplugged.

The majority of my 8th grade CS classes work through the lessons from Code.org’s Discoveries curriculum. One of my favorite lessons is Unit 1, Lesson 6 on Processing, where kids have to sort cards without talking. Check it out!

In addition to the Code.org videos (in particular the How Computers Work  and How the Internet Works playlist, I use some content from the Crash Course Computer Science video series in class.

What about you? Please share below!

Stay teaching my friends,