NEWBERRY — The Force was with students at Newberry Elementary School this December. Thanks to the Star Wars-themed programming for The Hour of Code, students at Newberry Elementary School used Blockly, block-based programming, to write Star Wars programs.
By engaging in the process, the school was one of over 175,000 Hour of Code events worldwide the week of Dec. 7.
Students used Blockly, a precursor to programming language. Blockly uses blocks to symbolize computer code. Students moved the blocks around in a programming work space to adjust commands, events and actions in the programming.
“Our students love the Hour of Code and it is something I look forward to teaching them each year,” said Kevin Boozer, NES Computer Lab Monitor. “The video tutorials, hands-on learning and programming process give our students lots of chances to apply their character skills of resiliency, problem solving and reflective listening.”
Pre-kindergarten students worked as one large group to tell the computer lab manager which pieces to manipulate to complete the coding. Kindergarten students used a similar learning path but also had opportunity to work the puzzles and organize code individually.
Being able to create their own videogames was part of an expansion of the program from www.Code.org, a nonprofit that promotes computer science education throughout school curriculum and beyond.
“It is exciting to see the light bulbs go on when the logic behind the programming clicks and students start creating their own programs,” Boozer said. “This year if they create effective programs and write their own instructions, we will place them on our school website for their friends or community members to play.”
Community members interested in viewing the student videogames may do so at www.newberryes.org under the student link Hour of Code_Student Games.