Pattonville – Hour of Code Events

In September 2015, Pattonville High School hosted the district’s first ‘Hour of Code’ event. The hour-long program taught elementary school students, programming fundamentals through the use of an online, javascript based, drop-and-drop programming environment. For those familiar with MIT AppInventor or Scratch, the environment is very similar. Participants would be lead through a variety of different challenges that could be solved by dragging programmable blocks together to create a ‘program’. When the ‘program’ is run, an on-screen Sprite would follow the directions provided by the student.

The September session was made available to the first 20 students/parents to sign up. A subsequent one in October was opened to 40 students, and a November session was opened to 60. Through three months of the program, Pattonville has taught over 100 elementary school students basic programming, and computer science, fundamentals for them to use throughout school and their lives. A large-scale December event is also planned for Pattonville, in which every school in the district will host their very own Hour-of-Code event for their students, with High School computer science students volunteering at each school.

 

Where does Pattonville Robotics fit into this…

 

Several members of our Robotics team act as high school volunteers at these Hour-of-Code events. We help the students get through certain challenges, explain to them what is happening when they run their code, and challenge them to think in the most efficient ways possible, just as a computer scientist or programmer would. We are present at each event and help in challenging the students to think their way through the activity, and to carefully consider what they are doing before aimlessly pressing the ‘run’ button.