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Introduction to CS

Developed by NYC Department of Education, CS4ALL for the Software Engineering Program, Jr.

Lead Author: Lionel Bergeron, Director of Elementary School Computer Science Academics

Creative Commons Content from Hello Ruby by Linda Luikas

Copyrighted Content from Secret Coders by Gene Luen Yang

w/ Hello Ruby

& Secret Coders

Unit Overview:

Introduction to CS w/ Hello Ruby & Secret Coders

The Intro to Computer Science Unit is designed to introduce students to academic concepts and practices of computer science as well as begin developing their computational thinking.  The unit consists mostly of unplugged activities, incorporating literacy and math skills through read alouds of Hello Ruby and/or Secret Coders.  Each lessons offers multiple activities for students to explore computer science and create classroom artifacts.  In addition, students will have opportunities to communicate their ideas, collaborate and problem solve.  Finally, students will develop a greater understanding of how block-based programming can be a flexible and meaningful programming language.  

Scope & Sequence

Kindergarten & 1st Grade

Section I

Section II

Section III

Lesson 1 

Lesson 1

Lesson 1

Lesson 2

Lesson 4

Lesson 3

2nd Grade & 3rd Grade

Section I

Section II

Section III

Lesson 1 

Lesson 2

Lesson 1

Lesson 2

Lesson 4

Lesson 4

Lesson 3

4th Grade & 5th Grade

Section I

Section II

Section III

Lesson 3

Lesson 4

Lesson 2

Lesson 3

Lesson 4

Lesson Plans

Section I

Lesson 1: Computers All Around

Introduction to Computer Science

Section I: All About Computers

Overview & Purpose

The lesson will help students identify what a computer is and how there are different types of computers.  Students will be able to identify input and output devices and how they relate to the function of a computer.  Students will also begin to recognize that they interact with different types of computers.  

Preparation

Collect 5 to 10 types of computers (images or physical objects)

Make copies of the Computer Safari worksheet

Vocabulary

computer - a device for working with different types information or data.

input - a way to give information, data, to a computer.

output - a way to get information, data, out of a computer.

computer science - using the power of computers to solve problems.

user - a person who uses or operates something, especially a computer.

Objectives

Students will be able to identify different types of computers.

Students will be able to compare the function of different computers.

Students will be able to classify different types of inputs & outputs.

Resources & Materials

BBC Bitesize: What is a computer?

iSpy: Computers worksheet

Computer Safari worksheet

Warm Up

Name: Is This A Computer?

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to identify different types of computers

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Group Discussion

How many of you have used a computer?

What is a computer? (vocab)

Show slides of different types of computers.

Start with some basic representations of computers, asking students if it is a computer.  Have them explain why it is or is not a computer.

Activity

Name: How could you use a computer?

Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to explain how they use computers

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Hand out iSpy worksheets.

Can you circle all the different types of computers you see?

Can you label all the different computers you see?

Pick 3-5 computers you found and describe what you think they do?

Students share what they found

Pair share or whole class

Display:

BBC Bitesize: What is a computer?

Go through the types of computers identified in the picture.

Wrap Up

Name: Computer Safari

Time: 5 minutes

Objective: Students will identify computers they see during the week.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Pass out Computer Safari worksheet

Give directions to students

Students ask clarifying questions

Does anyone have a question or comment?

Assessment

Formative

  • iSpy Worksheet
  • Computer Safari Worksheet

Extension Activities

Scrapyard Challenge

Find The Technology

Technology Vocabulary Slider Game

Input/Output Devices

 

Lesson 2: Computers And You

Introduction to Computer Science

Section I: All About Computers

Overview & Purpose

As students start to think about different types of computers and their different functions, the lesson will encourage students to think about how they interact with computers.  Students should begin to think about what they use computers.    

Preparation

Kahoot! Quiz to review types of computers

Vocabulary

computer - a device for working with different types information or data.

input - a way to give information to a computer.

output - a way to get information out of a computer.

function - the purpose for which something is designed or exists; role.

user - a person who uses or operates something, especially a computer.

Objectives

Students will be able to identify computers that they use.

Students will be able to investigate different functions of computers.

Resources & Materials

How Could You Use A Computer? worksheet

Warm Up

Name: A Computer’s Function

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students will review types of computers and their function

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Kahoot! Quiz - 5 to 10 images of objects that ask students true or false “Is This A Computer?”

Students will need a web enabled device.  Make sure to test the kahoot! Quiz prior to the lesson.

Activity

Name: Computer Safari

Time: 10 to 15 minutes

Objective: Students share computers they found and what they do.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Have students share the list of computers they found on safari and what the computers were doing.  

Pair share or whole class share

Create a whole class list to see if any students have found similar computers.

Ask students to share what different functions computers can have.

First define computer function (not to be confused with a function in programming)

Create a whole class list of computer functions.  

Activity

Name: How Could You Use A Computer?

Time: 15 Minutes

Objective:

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Hand out worksheets to students.

Draw yourself using a computer.  

What are you doing?  Why?

Are others using the computer too?

Can you identify inputs & outputs?

Students draw a picture of them using any type of computer.

If students are able to write, have them label items in the picture or write a brief description.

Wrap Up

Name: Share Your Picture

Time: 5 to 10 minutes

Objective: Students are able to communicate with other about how they use computers.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Share out

Pair share or whole class

Display pictures

See if there are any specific ways to group pictures (laptops, desktops, phones, games, watch videos, etc.)

Assessment

Formative

  • Kahoot! Quiz
  • Student created picture, labels & description

Lesson 3: The Next Best Thing

Introduction to Computer Science

Section I: All About Computers

Overview & Purpose

Students will use their understanding of computer types and functions to create a new type of computer.  Using a magic power button students take a non-technology object and make it a computer.  Students should include how they would interact with it, as well as identify inputs, including sensors, and outputs.  Students will also include a description of the computer’s function.  

Preparation

Collect a variety of non-technology items (should be one per student and can be pictures.) examples: pencil, toothbrush, etc.

Copies of My Magical Computer worksheet

Copy of Magic Power Buttons

Vocabulary

sensor - a device that detects or measures a physical property and records, indicates, or otherwise responds to it.

prototype - a first, typical or preliminary model of something, especially a machine, from which other forms are developed or copied.

iteration - a new version of a piece of computer hardware or software.

test - a trial to find out if something works.

Objectives

Students will be able to identify different types of sensors.

Students will be able to identify different types of inputs & outputs.

Students will be able to apply computer characteristics to a non-computer

Resources & Materials

Non-technology items examples

My Magical Computer worksheet

Magic Power Buttons

Origin of the Power Symbol

Kid Inventors

Warm Up

Name: 5 years from now!

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students will hypothesize what everyday items will look like 5 years from now.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Group Discussion

“Who likes to invent/make things?”

“Who has heard of The Next Big Thing?”

Give students a list of everyday items, toaster, phone, broom, car, etc.

Have students pick one thing and describe what it will look like in five years.  

Students can discuss, write or draw their answers.  

“Will it have a computer in it?  Why?”

Activity

Name: My Magic Computer

Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Objective: Students will create a new computer out of a non-computer.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Give each student a Magic Power Button.

Explain that this power button has the ability to instantly turn anything into a computer.  

The power button can be a cut out or a sticker.

Have an example prepared to demonstrate how the power button works.  

Pass out or have students choose one non-computer item to power on.

Students tape or stick on the Magic Power Button.

“Start thinking about what your new computer might do.”  

Have students complete the My Magic Computer worksheet.

Students may struggle coming up with an idea at first.  

“What would you want this object to do?”

Wrap Up

Name: What does your computer do?

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students are able to explain to another student what their computer does.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Have students share their magical computer with a classmate.

Provide students with clarifying questions.

Have students present their partners magical computer with the rest of the class.

This provides students an opportunity to practice active listening.

Assessment

Formative

My Magical Computer worksheet

My Magical Computer checklist

Section II

Lesson 1: Ruby & Her Friends

Introduction to Computer Science

Section II: Practices, Concepts & Perspectives

Overview & Purpose

The lesson will introduce student to the characters in the Hello Ruby book.  Students will begin to identify characteristics of CS Learners as they relate to the perspectives explorer and creator.  Characteristics include but are not limited to perseverance, problem solving, creative, curious, patient, team player, etc.

Preparation

  • Read pages 4 to 11 prior to lesson
  • Prepare slides of Ruby and Friends for read aloud
  • Copies of CS Learner worksheet

Optional Activities

  • Prepare slides for Who Am I? Activity
  • Copies of Faux Facebook Profile worksheet

Vocabulary

frustrated - feeling annoyed or angry because something is not the way you want it.

persistence - trying again and again, even when something is hard.

explore - to become familiar with by testing or experimenting.

creative - using the power of computers to solve problems.

curious - a desire to investigate and learn.  

Objectives

Students will be able to infer characteristics of a CS Learner.

Students will be able to use strategies to persist through frustration.

Resources & Materials

  • Copy of Hello Ruby
  • Slides of Ruby and Friends for read aloud
  • What is a CS Learner worksheet

Optional Activities

  • Slides for Who Am I? Activity

Warm Up

Name: This is Ruby

Time: 5 minutes

Objective: Students are introduced to the Hello Ruby book and Ruby

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Display the Hello Ruby book

Use the physical book, document camera, or slide of photo.

Explain to students how they will be hearing about Ruby and her adventures.

Read aloud Chapter 1

Put your listening ears on!  Tell me something you learn about Ruby.

Activity

Name: Meet The Characters

Time: 15 minutes

Objective: Students learn about the different characters in Hello Ruby

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Show and discuss with students the slides of Ruby & her friends.  

Have students read text on slides.

Have students take notes of what they learn about each character.

“What did you learn about the characters?”

“Did you hear something funny?”

“Did you hear a word you did not recognize?”

Activity

Name: CS Learners

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students can identify characteristics of a CS Learner

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Have students complete the CS Learner worksheet.  

Individual, pair work.

Have students share one of the characteristics.

Create a top ten list of characteristics of a CS Learner

Activity <optional>

Name: Who Am I?

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students can remember the different characters of Hello Ruby

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Display the character grid   

projector, interactive whiteboard or document camera.

“Can anyone name the character?”

Present the profiles for Friend 1 to Friend 5.  

Can students identify the characters associated with each profile.

Think of different student responses, i.e. holding up pictures of character.

Have students create a similar profile for the Friend 6.

Individual or whole class

Wrap Up

Name: How are you a CS Learner?

Time: 5 minutes

Objective: Students will identify characteristics they have in common with a CS Learner.    

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Ask students what makes them a CS Learner?

Use the top 10 list if students get stuck.

Have all students identify in some way that they are CS Learners.  

Assessment

Formative

  • iSpy Worksheet
  • Computer Safari Worksheet

Extension Activities

Create a Faux Facebook Profile Page for their favorite character

 

Lesson 2: Let’s Make A Plan

Unit 1: Introduction to Computer Science

Section II: Practices, Concepts & Perspectives

Overview & Purpose

As the students learn about Ruby’s grand adventure they will be able to identify some of the challenges she may face and help her with a plan to face those challenges.  

Preparation

Read pages 12 to 23 before lesson

Make copies of Postcard worksheet

Make copies of Make A Map worksheet

Vocabulary

plan - a way something is to be done that is thought out ahead of time.

adventure - a journey or activity that is exciting.

challenge - an interesting or difficult problem or task.

clue - a hint that helps solve a puzzle, problem, or mystery.

persistence - trying again and again, even when something is hard.

Objectives

Students will be able to identify challenges when completing a task.

Students will be able to create a plan when given a challenge or problem.

Resources & Materials

Hello Ruby book

Postcard worksheet

Make A Map worksheet

Warm Up

Name: Clues & A Plan

Time: 15 minutes

Objective: Students learn about Ruby’s grand adventure.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Read aloud Chapter 2: The Clues

Put your listening ears on!  

“What is Ruby’s grand adventure?”

“Why is she frustrated?”

“What clues does Ruby find?”

Read aloud Chapter 3: Ruby’s Plan

Put your listening ears on!  

“Why does Ruby need a map?”

“Why is the map incomplete?”

Activity

Name: Send Ruby A Postcard

Time: 10 to 15 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to come up with ideas to help Ruby during her grand adventure.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Review with students the characteristics of a CS Learner.    

“Who can remind me of what makes a CS Learner?”

“How could that help Ruby?”

Provide students with Postcard worksheet.  Have students write/draw ideas for giving Ruby advice to help her on her grand adventure.  

“What advice would you give Ruby on her grand adventure?”

“What other things would you bring on such a grand adventure?”

Activity <optional>

Name: Make A Map (HR Exercise 8)

Time: 15 Minutes

Objective: Students will be able to create a simple algorithm for Ruby.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Students will help Ruby find her friends using the following Make A Map worksheet.  

Provide students with a copy of the worksheet.

This is the first opportunity for students to create a simple algorithm/program for Ruby to follow using arrows.  

Provide students a game piece or cutout to move along the map.  

Students will use directional arrows and “stop and say hello” icon to write out an algorithm for Ruby to follow.  

The light blue boxes are water, so they will need to go over the bridge, the brown box.

Review with students from the chapter the order Ruby was planning on taking, penguin, leopard, foxes, robots but did not not have a plan for final gem.

Students may have different algorithms depending on path.

Students can work independently or in pairs.

Wrap Up

Name: Share Your Postcard/Map

Time: 5 to 10 minutes

Objective: Students are able to communicate with others on the advice they would share with Ruby.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Students read aloud

Students can read their postcard or a classmates postcard.

Test the algorithm

Students can share the make a map worksheet with another classmate to see if they can follow the program.  This is an opportunity to debug.  

Assessment

Formative

  • Student Postcard
  • Debug the Make A Map worksheet

Lesson 3: Concept Exercises (HR Chapters 4-10)

Introduction to Computer Science

Section II: Practices, Concepts & Perspectives

Overview & Purpose

The lesson is a series exercises from the Hello Ruby Activity Book that help introduce students to computer science concepts through unplugged activities.  The four activities address sequence, decomposition, pattern recognition and data structures.  The four activities can be taught in the provided sequence or any preferred combinations.      

Preparation

Preview all exercises prior to teaching the lesson.

Sequence Worksheet

Decomposition Presentation & Worksheet

Pattern Recognition Presentation & Paper Doll or Wallpaper Worksheet

Data Structure Presentation & Lunchtime Worksheet

Vocabulary

sequence - give step-by-step instructions in the right order. (pg 39-42)

decomposition - breakdown a problem into smaller pieces. (pg 29)

pattern recognition- finding similarities between things. (pg 33-34)

data - Information. Often, quantities, characters, or symbols that are the inputs and outputs of computer programs. (pg 25, 50)

data structure - a way to organize data. (pg 48)

Objectives

Students will be able to describe basic computer science concepts.

Resources & Materials

Copy of Hello Ruby book

Sequence Worksheet

Decomposition Presentation & Emoji Masks

Pattern Recognition Presentation & Paper Doll or Wallpaper Worksheet

Data Structure Presentation & Lunchtime Worksheet

Vocabulary Presentation

Warm Up

Name: Hello Ruby’s Adventure

Time: 10-15 minutes

Objective: Students will be introduced to computer science concepts.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Review vocabulary with students.

Have a worksheet or note cards students can refer to with vocab definitions.

“As I read the book aloud I want everyone to listen for examples of our vocabulary words.”  

Provide students a way to keep notes as you are reading Hello Ruby.

Students can draw or write notes as you read aloud.  

Provide a graphic organizer identifying the specific concepts.  

Read aloud Chapter 4 to 10

Put your listening ears on!  

“What did you notice about the penguin, snow leopard, foxes, robots and Django?”

Activity

Name: Bossy Little Ruby (pg 71)

Time: 10 to 15 minutes

Objective: Students will be able identify different steps to a specific task and provide the correct sequence to complete the task.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Review or re-read Chapter 1: Meet Ruby to the class.

“What are some things Ruby’s Dad asks her to do?” (get dressed for school or clean up her room)

“Why did she have trouble with these tasks?”  

Write step-by-step instructions with the class.

Choose getting dressed for school or cleaning her room.

Have students give one step at a time.  You want them to be out of order.

“Are they in the appropriate order?”

As a group write the instructions in the appropriate sequence.

Pass out worksheet and have students complete the steps for brushing teeth, then review.  

Have students create their own step-by-step instructions for a different task.  

Give a list of tasks students can choose from, i.e. eat breakfast, get ready for bed, go swimming.

Allow students to draw the steps.  

Limit to 4 steps per task.

Activity

Name: Builder (pg 72)

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to break down an object into its smaller parts.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Refer to Hello Ruby and how she breaks down larger problems into smaller tasks to build something.  

Examples are parts of a raft, ladder or bridge.

Show students the examples of a bird, a bug and a processor.

Show the ‘built’ image first and see if students can identify the parts.

Display or hand out emoji mask examples.

Have students decompose/break down the emoji mask into its different parts.  

You can use any type of image besides the emoji masks.  

Students can write a list describing the parts as well as drawing the parts.

Activity

Name: Ruby’s Outfit Rules (pg 73)

Time: 10 to 15 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to identify patterns.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Display the image of Ruby in her different outfits. (this can relate to the robots making cupcakes.  Different icing, toppings or flavor)

Can you identify any similarities between the different outfits?

Examples - same color, patterns, when you wear them, types of shirts or pants, etc.

Recognizing patterns helps us make decisions.  Have students choose which outfit Ruby would wear according to her rules.

On Mondays I wear clothes with polka dots.

On Tuesdays I wear blue or yellow clothes.

On Wednesdays I choose only clothes that begin with the letter D.

On Thursdays I wear hats.

On Fridays I wear white and pink clothes.

Pass out the paper doll worksheet.

Have students create their own dress-up rule for what Ruby likes to wear on the weekend.  

Students can share their rules with a classmate and cut out the outfit.

Provide an example for Saturday or Sunday and have students cut out an outfit.  Then have students create a rule for the other day.

Instead of days of the week have students create rules for months, seasons, events, etc.

Activity

Name: Wallpaper (pg 87)

Time: 10 to 15 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to formulate instructions to create patterns.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Explain that the snow leopard is thinking of remodeling her house.  She needs the students help choosing a wallpaper.

Display patterns 1-3 and as a class figure out how to complete the pattern.  

Provide students with a worksheet version of the patterns to keep track of their answers.

Display the patterns 4-6 and have students complete the patterns independently.  

Provide cutouts or choice boards for students who need assistance.

Have students create their own patterns.

Students can use the images from patterns 1-6 or create their own images, limit them 2 to 4.

<optional> Have students identify how the patterns repeat and then use a loop/repeat command to recreate the pattern.

Activity

Name: Lunchtime (pg 84)

Time: 10-15 minutes

Objective: Students will be able organize data into different structures.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Display the images of veggies and fruits.

Review the definition for data.

“What kind of data do you see on the screen.” (images, words, fruit, veggie)

Show the example of the lunchbox.

“Let’s organize our data.  What are the rules for organizing this lunchbox?”

Pass out the Lunchbox worksheet and have students organize the the data.

Students can either draw the fruit and veggie or write the name.

Wrap Up

Name: Share w/ Word Wall

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to explain different CS concepts.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Students share examples of sequence, decomposition, pattern recognition and data structure.  

Examples can be connected to word wall.

Assessment

Formative

Worksheets

Extension Activities

Additional Hello Ruby Exercises


Lesson 4: Applying Computational Thinking (HR Chapters 4-10)

Introduction to Computer Science

Section II: Practices, Concepts & Perspectives

Overview & Purpose

The purpose of this lesson is to give students an opportunity to apply computational thinking to a series of activities related to one task.  Beginning with introducing students to documentation and reflection, students will help Ruby make soup using the concepts decomposition, pattern recognition, generalization, algorithms, programming and debugging.    

Preparation

Copies of documentation materials (i.e. CS journal, wireframing)

Copies of Ruby Makes Soup materials

Vocabulary

pseudocode - a generic way of depicting algorithms without use of any specific programming language-related notations.

wireframe - an image or set of images which displays the functional elements or a website or application.

algorithm - a list of steps to finish a task.  A set of instructions that can be performed with or without a computer. (pg 39-42)

decomposition - breakdown a problem into smaller pieces. (pg 29)

pattern recognition- finding similarities between things. (pg 33-34)

Objectives

Students will be able to critique their work in CS.

Students will be able to describe basic computer science concepts. 

Resources & Materials

Teaching My Kids Programming

Introducing The Design Process 

Scissors

Glue

Warm Up

Name: Hello Ruby’s Adventure

Time: 10-15 minutes

Objective: Students will be introduced to computer science concepts.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Review vocabulary with students.

Have a worksheet or note cards students can refer to with vocab definitions.

“As I read the book aloud I want everyone to listen for examples of our vocabulary words.”  

Provide students a way to keep notes as you are reading Hello Ruby.

Students can draw or write notes as you read aloud.  

Provide a graphic organizer identifying the specific concepts.  

Read aloud Chapter 4 to 10

Put your listening ears on!  

“What did you notice about the penguin, snow leopard, foxes, robots and Django?”

Activity <optional>

Name: Giving Directions

Time: 10 -15 minutes

Objective: Students will learn how use different ways to give directions.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Ask students to give/write directions from the classroom to a different locations in the school, i.e. bathroom, cafeteria, office.

Provide students with some context for giving directions, i.e. there is a new student, a special guest, parent visiting.  

Start with whole group, “Who can help and give me directions to the bathroom?”

“Ok, take a out a blank sheet of paper.  Can you draw me directions to the bathroom?”

“Next, add text to your drawing to help explain the directions.”

Share directions

Have the students exchange their directions with a partner and then provide feedback (reflect).  

Help students make a connection to how instructions can be drawn, written or both.  Giving directions is similar to creating a program for a computer.    

Review vocabulary

Review vocabulary and definition, explain pseudocode (written or drawing).    

Activity <optional>

Name: There’s An App for That

Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Objective: Students will learn how to use wireframing to design an app.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Handout the wireframing worksheet.

Explain to students that they are going to design an app for giving directions.  

Students can create an app for Ruby to help her find the different gems or someone visiting the school.

Create an example to share with students.

The focus is on simple design, students should have freedom to create what they think the app would look like.

Peer Feedback.  Explain to students that reflecting and providing feedback on a project is very important.

Have students exchange their prototype and have them provide each other feedback.

“Describe one thing you love.”

“Ask to clarify one part of the app.”

“Make one recommendation.”

Iteration - have students take the feedback and make changes.

Have the students make the changes directly on the worksheet.  

Encourage students not to erase.  It is important to keep track of progress and steps.

Share out.  Have students share their final design.

Explain that prototyping is a continuous process and often designs are always improved upon.  

Activity

Name: Ruby makes Soup

Time: 30 to 60 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to apply CS concepts to a task.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

This activity is a series of smaller activities.  Make sure to complete activities 1 to 3.  Activity 4 and Debugging are optional.  This can also be done over more than one period.  

Explain to students that Ruby needs their help to make soup.  

Using the Ruby Makes Soup presentation, slide 3 and 4 to set up the story.  

Connect to how Ruby followed a set of steps to finding the gems.  

Slide 5 - how many steps are there for making soup.  

  • Take out a piece of paper
  • 60 seconds to write down as many steps to make soup.
  • Read off list to class.
  • Cross off any duplicates.
  • How many do you have left.

This can be an activity that is made into a simple game to see which student has the most unique steps.

Explain that steps should not be too specific (i.e. add ingredients, not add chicken, peas, etc.  Would take too long.)

Slide 8 - pass out the ingredients worksheet.  

  • Cut out each ingredients
  • Sort them into three categories
  • Describe your categories to elbow partners

Categories should be observable characteristics and avoid opinions (tastes good)

Use slide 9 to discuss possible categories or characteristics (note: slide has different ingredients)

You can also use physical objects not related to soup making (i.e. game pieces, see slide 2)  

Slide 11 - Passout likes and dislikes worksheet.

  • Using categories come up with a rule for what Ruby likes and what Ruby doesn’t like.
  • Sort ingredients on worksheet based on rules.
  • Glue down ingredients.         

Sample rules and sorting on Slide 12.

Students do not have to use all ingredients in this step.

Slide 14 - (optional) Pass out recipe worksheet.

  • On the right side label and describe each ingredient.
  • On the left side write the steps for adding the ingredients.
  • Have students include the repeat command.

Before gluing down ingredients, student can share their receipt with another student and see if they can follow it.  This is a good opportunity for introducing debugging - Slide 19.  

Wrap Up

Name: CS Journals

Time: 5 to 10 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to reflect on the practices and concepts used during the task. 

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Have students reflect on the task of helping Ruby make soup.  

“How is making soup related to computer programming?”

“What did you like about this activity?”

“How does prototyping help?”

Assessment

Formative

Worksheets, app wireframing

Summative

Recipe

Section III

Lesson 1: The Penguins’ Code

Introduction to Computer Science

Section III: Different Languages

Overview & Purpose

The lesson will introduce students to how there are different types of programming languages.  Students will use the Penguins’ Code to decipher and write secret codes.  Students will understand how letters and words can be represented by symbols but still communicate the same word or phrase.    

Preparation

Copies of the Penguins’ Code Secret Language key

Examples of Penguin Code

Vocabulary

code - a system of signals used to represent letters or numbers in transmitting messages.  (Instructions written by a programmer in a programming language are often called source code.)

decipher - convert (a text written in code, or a coded signal) into normal language.

Objectives

Students will be able to investigate how data/information can be represented in different ways.

Resources & Materials

Morse Code Translator

Morse Code Worksheet

Warm Up

Name: Other Languages

Time: 15 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to identify different types of computers

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Revisit Hello Ruby Chapter 4

Reread the chapter if it has been some time since it was read aloud.

“Does anyone remember the Penguins Ruby met?”

“What do you remember about them?”

“Why did Ruby have trouble understanding them?”

Discuss how there are different languages.

  • Allows you to communicate the same idea in different ways
  • Computers have their own language they understand.
  • In order to program we must be able to understand those languages.  
  • Often they seem like a secret at first, like the penguins.

“How many of you speak a different language?”

Activity

Name: Secret Language

Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to read and write in a secret language.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Display the slide with the Penguins speaking in their own language.

“What do you think the Penguins saying?”

“What would help you better understand their secret language?”

Pass out the Secret Language worksheet.

Have students translate the first two messages.  

Have students draw a third message.

Make sure to emphasize it is a secret language and do not shout out the answer.

Wrap Up

Name: Student Decipher & Share

Time: 5 - 10 minutes

Objective: Students will able to decipher other students’ messages.  

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Have students share their message with another student to decipher.

Pairs or whole group.

Assessment

Formative

  • Secret Language worksheet

Extension Activities

Morse Code Message worksheet

Have students write messages using Morse Code

Lesson 2: Binary Birds (SC Chapter 1)

Introduction to Computer Science

Section III: Different Languages

Overview & Purpose

The lesson will use Chapter 1 of Secret Coders Book I introduce students to binary representation of data, specifically numbers.  Computers use binary, the digits 0 and 1 (on and off) to store data.  A binary digit, or bit, is the smallest unit of data in computing and is the foundation of how we understand computer storage, i.e. byte (8 bits), megabyte, terabyte, etc.  Students will learn how to read and write binary representation of numbers.    

Preparation

Read chapter 1 of Secret Coders Book I

Copies of the Binary Game Worksheet

Vocabulary

binary - a way of representing information/data using only two options.

byte - the most common fundamental unit of digital data, eg. kilobyte, megabyte, etc.  A single byte is 8 bits-worth of data.

code - a system of signals used to represent letters or numbers in transmitting messages.  (Instructions written by a programmer in a programming language are often called source code.)

decipher - convert (a text written in code, or a coded signal) into normal language.

Objectives

Students will be able to understand how binary represents data.

Students will be able to explain different binary representations, i.e. on/off, open/closed.

Resources & Materials

Secret Coders book

Secret Coders website

Binary Game Worksheet

Warm Up

Name: Meet The Coders

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students will learn about the characters in Secret Coders and identify what skills helped them solve the mystery of the school.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Display the Secret Coder website section “Meet The Coders”

Click on each of the five characters and read the description for each one.

Have students take notes.

Students can either take notes in a notebook or create a graphic organizer.

“What do you think the story is about?”

Activity

Name: Chapter 1: Binary Birds

Time: 10 to 15 minutes

Objective: Students will be introduced to binary representation of numbers through the binary birds in chapter 1.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Read aloud Chapter 1  

Put your listening ears on!

“What characteristics helps Hopper and Eni figure out the mystery of the Binary Birds?”

Students should take notes as Chapter 1 is read aloud.  

Provide journal prompts or a graphic organizer.  

Activity

Name: Binary Game

Time: 15 Minutes

Objective:

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Hand out the Binary Game worksheet and seven place holders.

Students can cut out pennies to use as place holders.  

Do not want students coloring in because they would need multiple sheets.

Play the game:

  • Start with seven pennies
  • Fit all seven pennies into the boxes.  Every column has to be completely empty or full.
  • Empty column is 0 and full column is 1.                  

“How do you write 7 as a binary number?”

Answer is on the bottom of the worksheet.

Have students pick another number between 0 and 15 and create the binary number.

Have students give each other binary numbers i.e. 1001 and have classmate(s) figure out actual number i.e. 10.

Challenge students to draw a similar puzzle sheet but for numbers going up to 100.

Each column doubles the number of boxes from the previous column.  Students may need a bigger piece of paper or can draw it on the back of the worksheet.

Wrap Up

Name: What’s The Combination?

Time: 5 to 10 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to guess the combination to the lock and create their own combination to the a lock.

 

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Show slide 8 from the Binary Bird presentation. 

Have students try and figure out the combination.

“Can you figure out the combination to the lock?

Show slide 9 from the Binary Bird  presentation.

Can you draw your own combination?

Students can draw the birds freehand or use the blank binary bird worksheet.

Assessment

Formative

  • Binary Game
  • Guess the combination
  • Blank Binary Bird Worksheet

Extension Activities

Binary Bracelets

Binary Baubles 

Lesson 3: Robot Turtle (SC Chapter 2-3)

Introduction to Computer Science

Section III: Different Languages

Overview & Purpose

The lesson will use Chapters 2 and 3 of Secret Coders Book I to introduce students to computer science concepts algorithm and programming.  Students will learn how the characters from the story write basic algorithms to program the “Robot Turtle”.  Students will be able to draw conclusions about the importance of using precise instructions in the correct sequence.  

Preparation

Read chapters 2 & 3 of Secret Coders Book I

Copies of the Fun w/ Coding Part 1 & 2

Vocabulary

algorithm - a list of steps to finish a task.  A set of instructions that can be performed with or without a computer.

program - an algorithm that has been coded into something that can be run by a machine.

programming - the art of creating a program.

sequence - a set of related events, movements, or things that follow each other in a particular order.

loop - the action of doing something over and over again. Repeat.

Objectives

Students will be able write simple instructions to program a machine.

Students will be able to read and predict the outcome of a program.

Resources & Materials

Copy of Secret Coders Book I

Fun w/ Coding worksheet

Warm Up

Name: What Hopper and Eni Find

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to identify different types of computers

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Review what happened in Chapter 1

Have students review their notes from Chapter 1.

“What happened in the first Chapter of Secret Coders?”

“What did we learn about the birds?”

Have students guess what Hopper and Eni will find behind the locked door.

“Who thinks they have the right combination to the lock?”

“What do you think they are going to find?”

Activity

Name: Meet The Robot Turtle

Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to read a basic algorithm and predict what the program is meant to do.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Read aloud Chapter 2  

Put your listening ears on!

“What was the combination to the lock?”

“What did Hopper and Eni find?”

“What shape did the Robot Turtle make?”

“What made the Binary Birds attack?”

“How did Hopper stop the Binary Birds from attacking?”

Students should take notes as Chapter 2 is read aloud.

Have a group discussion on student predictions of Hopper’s program.

Provide journal prompts or a graphic organizer.  

“What did Hopper program the Robot Turtle to do?”

Pass out the Fun w/ Coding Part One worksheet

  • Review the three commands for the Robot Turtle, turn right, turn left and forward.
  • There are four programs on the sheet to get the Robot Turtle to a letter.
  • Predict the first program as a whole class.

There are two parts of of the Fun w/ Coding worksheet, print each side separately.

Create a grid on the floor with letters in different squares and have the students program each other.

Activity

Name: The Robot Turtle’s Secret

Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to read an algorithm with the repeat command and predict what the program is meant to do.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Read aloud Chapter 3  

Put your listening ears on!

“What did Hopper’s program do?”

“What does repeat mean?”

“What do you think the Open Sesame program will do?”

“What shape did the Robot Turtle make?”

Students should take notes as Chapter 3 is read aloud.

Have a group discussion on student predictions of Hopper’s program.

Provide journal prompts or a graphic organizer.  

“Can you write a program for the Robot Turtle to open the new path portal?”

“What do you think they will find?”

Pass out the Fun w/ Coding Part Two worksheet

  • Use the same three commands from Part One
  • Have students solve the first program.
  • Students write the programs to get the Robot Turtle to the letter O and A.

There are two parts of of the Fun w/ Coding worksheet, print each side separately.

Create a grid on the floor with letters in different squares and have the students program each other.

“Are there any letters the Robot Turtle can get to using the repeat command?”

Letter G

 Repeat 3[

     Forward 1

     Right 90

     Forward 1

     Left 90

 ]

Forward 1

End

Wrap Up

Name: Your Own Robot Turtle or Bird

Time: 5 to 10 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to relate programming a robot to their own life.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Have students reflect on Book I

Have students write or draw in their journal.

“The number 15 means attack and 0 means off for the Binary Birds.  What would you want the Binary Bird to do for you?  What number would you choose?”

“The Robot Turtle can be programmed to clear the sidewalk.  If you had a Robot Turtle what would you want it to do?  Could you write a program?” i.e. clean my room.

Assessment

Formative

Fun w/ Coding Worksheet

Coding Journal feedback

Lesson 4: Block Based Programming

Introduction to Computer Science

Section III: Different Languages  

Overview & Purpose

The lesson will introduce students to block-based programming.  Students will understand that block-based programming is a real programming language used to practice computer science.  Students will learn how to categorize and connect blocks.  

Preparation

Copies of Build A Block worksheets (Scratch Jr or Scratch)

Sample program in Scratch Jr. or Scratch

Vocabulary

program - an algorithm that has been coded into something that can be run by a machine.

programming - the art of creating a program.

block-based programming - any programming language that lets users create programs by manipulating “blocks” or graphical programming elements, rather than writing code using text.  Sometimes it is called visual coding, drag and drop programming, or graphical programming blocks.

blockly - the visual programming language used in Code.org’s online learning system for K-5 students.

command - an instruction for the computer.  Many commands put together make up algorithms and computer programs.

Objectives

Students will be able understand how commands are represented by blocks.

Students will be able to classify different types of blocks.

Resources & Materials

Build A Block worksheets (Scratch Jr or Scratch)

Scratch Blocks

Scratch Jr. Blocks

Scissors

Tape

Markers

Projector  

Warm Up

Name: Discussing Blocks

Time: 10 minutes

Objective: Students will understand block-based programming.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Ask students about their previous experiences with computer programming or coding.  

Bring up different examples given, i.e. Code.org, Scratch.

“Has anyone created their own computer program? (computer game, animation, website)”

“How did you create your own program?”

“Has anyone used block-based programming before?”

Explain how block-based programming is a real programming language.

  • Puzzle-piece shapes that are used to create code
  • Referred to as a Visual Programming Language
  • Prevents syntax errors
  • Blocks are categorized by “what they do” and are often color coded
  • Programming an object often referred to as a Sprite
  • Easy-to-use, yet sophisticated, control structures
  • The ability to build real programs

Show students how blocks work.

Scratch Jr for K-2 or Scratch to 2-5

Activity

Name: Build A Block

Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Objective: Students will create their own block.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Group discussion on what students would want a block to do.

“If you could create your own block what would it do?”

Hand out the Build A Block worksheet

  • Students write a word, phrase or draw a picture describing what the block does
  • Students cut out their block

Give students the choice of three categories, motion (controls movement), looks (costume, background, say), sound (voice, sound effect)

Have students share what their block does.

Students should be able to describe their block and can act it out.

Activity

Name: The First Program

Time: 10 to 15 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to connect blocks to write a program.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Ask a student to volunteer as a sprite and a programmer.

Offer students photos of sprites.  Have a cut out of “when the sprite clicked”

Block.

“What is a sprite?”

Have the programmer choose 3 to 5 blocks from classmates.

The programmer can tape the blocks together or have students stand side by side with blocks.

Programmer will run the program and the sprite will act it out.

Wrap Up

Name: Blockly Games

Time: 5 to 10 minutes

Objective: Students will be able to apply what they learned to an online activity.

Procedure

Teaching Tips & Discussion Questions

Have students go online and try applying what they learned to an online activity.

Students can use the original blockly games (text based blocks), lightbot or Monster Island.  

Reflect on using block-based programming.

In their coding journal students can write about their experience using block-based programming.

“What did you like about using blocks to code?”

“What are some challenges about using blocks to code?”

Assessment

Formative

Build A Block worksheet

Acting out My First Program

Coding Journal

Unit Perspectives

Explorer:

Students begin their CS journey as Explorers playing with computing. To make CS real to them, Explorers manipulate computing applications, problems, and topics with physical or visual manifestations.

Creator:

Students continue their CS journey as Creators expressing their ideas through computing. Intrigued by the possibilities of computing, Creators use computing to represent their ideas, thoughts, or interests.

Unit Practices

Analyze:

  • Analyze computing applications that they can see, touch, and hear.
  • Analyze categories of computing applications that intrigue them, or that they use daily.

Communicate:

  • Communicate the results of their exploration in a way that highlights the connections they made between their lives and computer science concepts.
  • Communicate connections they made between computing applications they analyzed, the artifacts they created, and the choices they made while building those artifacts.

Unit Concepts

Abstraction:

  • Explorers can break down the task into steps, notice patterns such as repetitions, and can find similarities between different steps or even entire tasks.
  • Creators can break down projects into components, as well as find patterns and similarities between components of a project.

Algorithm:

  • Explorers can design simple sequences and series of actions for routines or physical tasks.
  • Creators can design and implement multi-step processes that use loops that leverage patterns and characteristics.

Programming:

  • Explorers can interact with visual syntax in an unplugged lesson where they give or receive commands from peers to complete a task.
  • Creators can implement algorithms in development environments that offer open-ended possibilities with visual programming languages.

Data:

  • Explorers can explain how computers use sensors and inputs to collect data and outputs to represent data.
  • Creators can create visual representations of data using binary.

Parent Unit Guide

The More You Know:

The Intro to Computer Science Unit is designed to introduce your students to academic concepts and practices of computer science as well as begin developing their computational thinking.  The unit consists mostly of unplugged activities, incorporating literacy and math skills.  If you are new to computer science and would like to learn more the following resources are a great start.

Standards:

Computational Thinking:

Adult Learners:

Talking To Your Children About CS:

It can be a challenge sometimes knowing how to ask children about what they learn in school.  It can be even more challenging with a content area less familiar to parents.  The following questions will help to spark discussions at home about what your children are learning in this unit.  

Can you tell me about how you use a computer?

What is so magical about computers?

What new computer science words did you learn?  What do they mean?

If the class read Hello Ruby:

Can you tell me about Ruby’s adventure?  Who does she meet?

What makes a good computer science learner?

If the class read Secret Coders? 

What secrets do Hopper and Eni discover about their school?

What is a Binary Bird?

What is a Robot Turtle?

Computer Science at Home:

The following are some suggested resources for computer science at home.  Books, board games and other online activities are great ways your children to continue learning and practicing what they learn.  

Books

Board Games

Online Activities

Teacher Learning

PD Materials

August PD

  • Folder Content
  • Presentation

September PD

  • Folder Content
  • Presentation

Google Classroom

SEPjr Cohort 1

SEPjr Cohort 2

Other Resources

Standards:

Computational Thinking:

Adult Learners:

Copyright Credit