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D45 Participates in Hour of Code

In District 45, Hour of Code quickly became Hours of Code!
The District celebrated Computer Science Education Week by joining the largest learning event in history: the Hour of Code 2018, themed, What will you create? In Illinois alone, there were 1,856 groups participating, and worldwide the number was 204,702 groups.  

District 45 Instructional Technology Facilitator Melissa Guido and Innovative Media Facilitator Stephanie Huizinga created a What will you create? Google site for D45 staff complete with coding sites that offered grade-level activities.  Plugged and unplugged activities were also created for special area classes such as Art, Music, and PE. For example, PE students participated in Move It, Move It where they learned that they needed a common language in order to give clear instructions. Classroom activities were tweeted out including #d45kidscode in the tweet. According to Mrs. Guido, coding is when students tell the computer, or person as in the case of the unplugged activity, what to do as in “cause and effect, if this then that.” The process also includes and encourages active collaboration with their peers. 

During the week of Dec. 3-7, faculty was invited to use the resources on the site to spend an hour (or more) of free coding time with support from Mrs. Guido and Mrs. Huizinga along with other staff, in order to have a ton of FUN while creating. Included on the Hour of Code 2018 site was a Google Hangout that allowed classrooms to connect and share. Participating students received, I participated in the Hour of Code stickers, and completion certificates. All students in District 45 are one to one during the school day, with the middle school students taking their devices home at night. 

“The world is changing very quickly,” said Melissa Guido. “Future jobs require critical-thinking and problem-solving skills. We are building skills so students can participate in our work force, and in our society.”

Students in a 4th grade Art class at York Center School spent an Hour of Code creating their own Google Doodle on their Chromebooks in a program called Scratch. York Center/Stevenson Art teacher Anne Meyer encouraged students to incorporate their own interests,such as sports, music or other activities into the design by telling them, “Anything you are creating should always tell a little bit about you.”

“Sometimes an Hour of Code event sparks that one student to go home and do this, or it sparks a teacher to incorporate coding more into the classroom,” said Melissa Guido, who is already planning Hour of Code 2019.