For an overview of my club see Week 1
This week I had 2 extra boys from Year 5 and my 2 splitters returned to bring my total to 12 children from Year 2 to Year 6. I had more laptops so there was less sharing but still not enough USB cables, d'oh!
This week I threw together a worksheet (don't use it, see Stuff that didn't work!) on how to create a Magic 8 Ball. I had a demo micro:bit working to show them what the end result was.
Stuff that worked
Having a demo was really great. I asked a silly question "Am I cool?" and got a silly answer: "No" which delighted the children.
For the older kids (Year 5 & 6), the handout worked. They were able to follow most of it and create the final program.
My own son liked the pictures of the code in the worksheet.
Stuff that didn't work
For the younger kids, it was 50/50 when it came to the worksheet. Some got so far then asked questions, lots couldn't even start
I didn't introduce the task well enough. I rushed into handing out the worksheets and wanted them to work independently so no one got bored waiting for someone else.
I don't think they learnt what a variable is or how a condition statement works. That was way too ambitious. I'm going for learning through doing. Do enough If statements and you'll get what it is?
The girl who left us last week was desperate for help. She was jumping up and down waving her arms around saying plllleaaaassse constantly. For simple tasks that the worksheet covered! But I have to remember: They are still very young. Worksheets are tough.
I had 3 pictures describing how to create an IF statement
Step 1: IF True THEN
Step 2. IF 0 = 0 THEN
Step 3. If Random = 1 THEN
However, 3 groups thought they needed to create 3 different programs, rather than build up one program. Again, I rushed.
Again, not enough USB cables!! Where do they go? Who's eating them??
Next week we're going to go outside to the front yard and play a game of catch. As we throw the ball person to person I'll chat about how this game is fun, but how can we make it more fun? A score? How do we record the score? What other games have a score? Talk about what a variable is, how it can change and how we can compare it to other numbers, e.g. when the score is 10 we stop.
Then we'll create a simple step counter with a variable to record the number of steps. The older kids could add a buzzer or a radio block to indicate the winner.