Learn to Code in 15 minutes?

The new computing curriculum requires schools to teach students how to code and understand a number of, to the layman, somewhat complex concepts.

 

But can you teach children to understand simple programming in 15 minutes? Here at FUZE we certainly know we can – and actually teach core coding skills in that short space of time. 

 

Coding has a number of very important fundamentals. An understanding of Loops, Variables and ‘If Then’ statements is required to code using any programming language. In fact, it’s safe to say this is applicable to all programming languages from Machine Code (the most advanced) to Scratch (one of the simplest).

 

A solid understanding of these core concepts can be achieved very quickly when presented in an accessible environment with instant feedback and is fun to use.children fuze

 

This is the FUZE method of teaching. We deliver FUZE Coding Workshops to schools and STEM events around the country using our own FUZE code studio. In every case children achieve a level of understanding beyond expectations. From as young as four (!!) to early twenties, along with teachers, we successfully raise digital skills and teach core coding principles across the ability spectrum.

 

The computing curriculum requires that in Key Stage 1 students should;

• Understand what algorithms are and how they are used

• Create and debug simple programs

• Use logical reasoning to predict the behaviour of simple programs

• Create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve digital content

 

.. and in Key stage 2 should be able to;

• Design, write and debug programs that accomplish specific goals

• Use sequence, selection, and repetition in programs

• Work with variables and various forms of input and output

• Use logical reasoning to explain how some simple algorithms work
Detect and correct errors in programs

 

FUZE delivers much of this in its early projects (see below)big bang warwick castle

 

INK = GREEN

PAPER = WHITE

CLEARSCREEN

INPUT "Hi, what is your name? ", name$

INPUT "How many apples do you have? ", apples

WHILE apples > 0 LOOP

CLEARSCREEN

PRINT "Hello ";  name$

PRINT "You have ";  apples;  " apples remaining"

INPUT "Would you like to eat one? ", answer$

IF answer$ = "no" THEN

PRINT "Ok, bye for now then."

END 

ELSE 

apples = apples - 1

ENDIF 

REPEAT 

WAIT (0.5)

CLEARSCREEN

PRINT "That's the last of the Apples"

PRINT "I hope you don't get tummy ache."

END

 

Can we teach basic coding skills in 15 minutes?

 

Read through the above program line by line.  The only one that might need some explanation is REPEAT. It simply returns to the start of a LOOP. In this case this is the WHILE apples > 0 LOOP

Statement.

 

If you can grasp even a basic understanding of what is going on in this program then the answer to the 15 minute question is a resounding yes!

 

Imagine what can be achieved in a few hours or over the course of a term.  FUZE Projects rapidly progress to an advanced level, each building on the previous concepts.

 

You can download FUZE BASIC for Windows or Raspberry Pi from https://www.fuze.co.uk/get-fuze-basic.html and have a go for yourself. It’s free to download and so are the PDF worksheets.  If you would like to discuss getting FUZE in for a workshop day or just to discuss how best to implement FUZE in your school then please get in touch at contact@fuze.co.uk or call 01844 239 432.

 

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