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Warwick Holds Coding Assembly for All Elementary Schools

Warwick Holds Coding Assembly for All Elementary Schools

This month each elementary school across the district is having an assembly to announce the new opportunity that students will have to start learning how to code.  Through courses created by, “Code.org” students will begin learning the fundamentals and ideas that make up coding.  This has already been introduced at Warwick, but now all elementary students will have it as part of their regular instruction.  

Coding is essentially a set of directions that make a computer or program work.  The elementary schools will incorporate lessons from “Code.org” to help students understand how things function.  They present very simple activities using familiar characters, like “Angry Birds” and Elsa and Anna from “Frozen.”  These activities include things like getting the angry bird to the pig by dragging blocks into different positions, making them go north, south, east, and west.  Students will be using visual blocks to code.  As students begin to write code, they will always be able to look and see what the text or language for it will be.  

Students will also learn how to “debug”, a term used in the coding world which simply means to fix a problem or troubleshoot.  Students will use virtual blocks by dragging them into different positions to assist them in learning how to solve a problem by using technology.  If that position doesn’t work, they will then have to find a workaround solution.  Students will have a set of directions and will have to use words to solve a problem, similar to how HTML and Javascript works.  "Unplugged" lessons are also woven throughout the course. These lessons give concrete examples of the fundamentals of computer science. For example, third-grade students will learn what an algorithm is by making paper airplanes.

Programmers speak to children at Warwick School District.

Real life Warwick programmers and coders were also presented during these assemblies. Nancy Reddig showcased the district’s own, “WarwickWARE” a computer software that helps connect Warwick’s staff and students to district information or data.  Students got to see firsthand the types of coding jobs available at their own school district for computer science.    

The elementary students also got to hear about some real experiences from Warwick High Schoolers.  Evan Troop, Liam Blevins, Johnathan Stephenson, Josiah McCracken and Lexi Geib discussed how they have had the opportunity to code even at the high school through different classes that are offered, like computer science and structured programming taught by Mr. Jeff Wile.  The high schoolers presented apps and programs they’ve coded themselves.  

Student speaking to elementary schools

Junior, Evan Troop discussed how he started coding in 8th grade, he’s created his own app that’s on the App Store.  His favorite classes are math and science.  The part that he likes most about coding is being able to solve various problems. 

Senior, Johnathan Stephenson only started coding a year ago, but he enjoys it and explained that it’s a big possibility for his future career.  He will be attending Penn State upon graduation.  

Josiah McCracken, a senior, said that Gameboy started his love of coding the 6th grade.  He plans on majoring in computer science in college.  He’s currently working on programming a Tetris type of game.  

Lastly, senior Lexi Geib created a sliding puzzle game where the objective is to merge the numbers to reach 2048.  Lexi took various computer science courses at Warwick and plans to major in that at Slippery Rock University. 

The future is bright for those who know code.   The coursework is challenging, but Warwick is excited that the Elementary Division is embracing “Code.org” to start the students on their code journey at a very young age.