Code Spark Have created an App called Academy with the Foos.
That can be used in classrooms to support students learning of coding through interactive activities. These activities include puzzles, games, step by step projects and printouts.
In the classroom, the teacher can use this app to help support the teaching and develop the students understanding of coding in interactive activities. The activities are suitable for different levels this gives students who a struggling an opportunity to develop their understanding.
Australian Curriculum- Digital Technologies: Processes and Production skills.
Tynker is a creative computing platform where students are able to learn how to program and build Apps, games and more. It is self paced and is easily incorporated into the Western Australian school curriculum (School Curriculum and Standards Authority, Government of Western Australia) in the subject of Technologies particularly the strand of Digital Technologies.
Students are encouraged and engaged to create games and animated projects using visual coding and provides them with the knowledge foundations in programming and computational thinking which will then help their progress into mainstream object orientated programming. It has powerful kid friendly tools and guided, independent instruction for your students.
The resources and instruction that are available to teachers are also fantastic. It has ready to use, grade specific lesson plans and links to STEM project templates for Math, Science, ICT and English to name a few.
Tynker can be used across different PC platforms (Windows or Mac) and mobile devices running IOS or Android.
Below are a link to Tynker’s website which will allow a free initial sign up for schools to look at coding across Year levels 1 to 8. This will introduce your class to visual programming. In this course, students get introduced to basic programming as they create interactive stories, design animations, and make mini-games in Tynker’s game-like interface. Each lesson is designed for a class period of 45-60 minutes.
Cross curriculum priorities and general capabilities
Critical and creative thinking (CCT),Information and Communication Technology (ICT),Literacy (LIT), Numeracy
Links to other learning areas
English, Science, Mathematics, Humanities and Social Sciences
A classroom activity using this resource
This program is a easy to use interactive program to manipulate timelines in a quick and efficient way. Both students and teachers can use this resource individually or collaboratively in sequence to collect and present data. The application allows students to easily insert dates in the past, present and into the future. It additionally allows them to enter pictures or text to connect a place in time with corresponding information. It allows students to individualize their timelines using colours, fonts and even insert pictures. It allows for multiple text boxes that can be minimized when not required and/or highlighted when needed.
This program is a effective way to promote the use of technologies whilst teaching them the traditional use of timelines but in a new, improved way. It allows for easy addition and subtraction of information and adjustment of legends if required. It additionally allows students to present their work in a professional, clear and concise format.
How to use this resource
This program is a web based program used through the website www.timeglider.com
You can follow the individual instructions on how to create the timeline using this link.
It is easy to use and within some simple steps you are ready to create your time time.
What is it? Kahoot! is an online quiz game, in which students can either play individually or as teams from multiple devices. The teacher creates an account and can create customised quizzes relating to the content the class has been learning. The teacher projects the quiz onto the interactive whiteboard. This allows students to view the questions, as questions are only view-able from the teacher account. Each game has a unique pin-code, and the students log into the game using the pin-code. The quizzes are a multi-choice platform, where students answer questions via selecting the correct answer (represented by both colours and symbols) from their device. Students score points for accuracy of their answer and for the fastness in which they answer. It is a great resource to use to test students’ knowledge as a summative task while incorporating ICT. Images and videos can also be added to the questions. At the end of each answer, students are provided with a graph of results, showing how many people chose what answer. These results remain completely anonymous to the students.
Application in classrooms via the use of the curriculum: I believe that this app would be most effective for students in middle to upper primary, but could possibly be modified for use in year 2. We will be looking at year 3-4.
Strand: Digital Technologies
Sub-Strand: Digital Technologies Processes and Production Skills
Content Descriptor: Plan, create and communicate ideas and information independently and with others, applying agreed ethical and social protocols(ACTDIP013)
This content descriptor was chosen because aspects of the website can relate to this. Students canhelp plan and create quizzes with teacher help and test their peers.
Investigating Food and Fibres by Primezone is a unit of work resource.
Resource Location: http://www.piefa.edu.au/units/foodandfibres.pdf
Resource description This unit encourages students to investigate how foods and fibres are produced. It includes sections on foods and fibres we use; how food and fibre are obtained; their production systems; and technologies and processes used to assist in their production and the contributions they make to societies. As the unit progresses, the emphasis shifts to investigating how the family and cultural group students belong to produce different foods or fibre. Students interview a member of their family to obtain this information and in turn share recipes, ingredients, methods and equipment suggested by the families with the class.
Year levels: 3 and 4
Design and Technologies Strand: Design and Technologies – Knowledge and Understanding –
ACARA Content Descriptor: Investigate food and fibre production and food technologies used in modern and traditional societies ACTDEK012
Types of food and fibre produced in different environments, cultures or time periods, including the equipment used to produce or prepare them (ACTDEK012)
Cross Curriculum Priorities – Sustainability
OI.2: All life forms, including human life, are connected through ecosystems on which they depend for their wellbeing and survival.
OI.3: Sustainable patterns of living rely on the interdependence of healthy social, economic and ecological systems.
Using the unit
The unit can be used in a number of ways. It will be of most benefit to teachers who wish to implement a sustained sequence of activities following the inquiry stages identified in the About the approach section of this unit and content descriptions in Years 3 and 4 in Design and Technologies as stated in the Australian Curriculum.
At each stage several activities are suggested from which you are encouraged to select the most appropriate for your purposes. Not all activities in each stage of the unit need to be used. Alternatively, you may add to or complement the suggested activities with ideas of your own. It is suggested that teachers create a hyperlinked unit. Organise the digital resources for your class’s use on a website or wiki or provide them on your interactive whiteboard.
The flexibility of this resource facilittes the teachers ability to target the learning to her class and differentiated abilities within the class. Although the resource is specifically designed for the one SCSA, ACARA outcome it is noted that it can be adapted for use in other year levels. Furthermore, the resource is easily adapted to include the Digital Technologies curriculum.
Year 3 – Digital Technologies
Knowledge and Understanding:
Different types of data can be represented in different ways (ACTDIK008)
Processes and production skills
COLLECTING, MANAGING AND ANALYSING DATA
Collect and present different types of data using simple software to create useful information (ACTDIP009)
Create and communicate ideas and information safely (ACTDIP013)
Investigating and defining
Create a sequence of steps to solve a given task
Develop and communicate ideas using labelled drawings and appropriate technical terms
Can be accessed and downloaded on the App Store (iPad/iPhone) or on Google Play (Android) for FREE
Critical and Creative Thinking
Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
Links to Other Learning Areas:
Health and Physical Education
How can an app lead us to a Healthier Future?
Bupa and The George Institute have created the app ‘FoodSwitch’. This app is used to help people find the healthiest brand for a desired food item. It helps individuals and families make healthier choices by giving alternatives (or ‘switches’) for different items based on the quantities of sugar, saturated fat, salt and kilojoules. It helps to take away the overwhelming feeling of reading food labels to decide which is the healthiest food by comparing the foods for you after simply scanning the products barcode!
How does the FoodSwitch app work?
Download the app from the App Store (iPhone/iPad) or from Google Play for FREE
Once in the app, you can select the filter you would like. There is a generic FoodSwitch option as well as SaltSwitch, EnergySwitch, FatSwitch and SugarSwitch option. Each shows the healthier option (in a traffic light system or Health-Star rating way) listed first based on the nutritional value of the product scanned. GlutenSwitch is also a filter which shows gluten-free alternatives. *FILTER CAN BE CHANGED WHENEVER DESIRED
Image shows options of the filters on the FoodSwitch app
After selecting a filter, under the scan button, you can scan any food products barcode. Alternatives are then given to this product (the different nutritional values are shown in a traffic light system or by the Health-Star ratings)
Image shows how products nutritional value is shown in a traffic light system. Seen below are healthy alternatives for the product scanned (healthiest at the top).
As many items as desired can be scanned and all appear under the ‘Recents’ button
Underneath the scanned product, alternative brands are listed with healthier choices to ‘switch’ the scanned product with being listed at the top
FoodSwitch Benefits for Students:
Improves design thinking. Students are required to create an outcome (based on healthy food options) that will benefit people
Students are reading data (using mathematics knowledge)
Students can use it in a cooperative working group so learn how to work with others and take turns
Students can use the app at home to educate their own family on healthy food options
Students are learning a easy way to make healthy food options
Students understand how a healthy lifestyle is sustainable for their lives as an app as simple as this can be used to provide healthy alternatives
Classroom Activity using FoodSwitch:
This is an engaging way for students to increase their digital technologies knowledge while learning about healthy food alternatives. FoodSwitch can be used by students of all ages to promote healthy eating. This app encourages students to compare data and base judgements on this data. Younger students can use this app to simply compare the different nutritional areas of food products and decide which are healthier alternatives. Older students can use this app in conjunction with a case study. They can have information about a ‘family’ and use this app to scan different food products and decide which would be most beneficial and improve their ‘families’ health in necessary areas. This app can be used in individual, partner and group work settings and works with any tablet or iPad. Students can use knowledge they learn through this app to educate their own family about healthy eating and healthy food alternatives.
Sub Strand: Acquire, store and validate different types of data and use a range of commonly available software to interpret and visualise data in context to create information (ACTDIP016)
Link to the Resource:
Cross Curriculum Priorities and General Capabilities: Critical and Creative Thinking, Personal and Social Capability, Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Numeracy
Links to other areas: Mathematics, Science, HASS
Classroom activity using this resource: Online Charts is a website designed to create charts which can be printed, emailed or saved as an image. As a registered user it can also be saved online for future editing. Students are able to choose from a wide variety of charts, including;
Although primary students are not required to create the more difficult charts, by using this website enables differentiation and exposes the gifted and talented students to extended learning.
There are numerous activities that can be done using this resource, whether it be with a science, mathematics or HASS focus. The following example could be used when teaching the Science Inquiry Skill of Planning and Conducting; observe, measure and record data with accuracy using digital technologies as appropriate (ACSIS104).
What Makes Mold Grow More Rapidly?
Students will create bread specimens using bread, mold spores and sealable sandwich bags. These will be placed in three different environments and data of growth of mold will be recorded at the same time each day throughout the experiment. Growth is measured using a transparent plastic grid sheet (10mm x 10mm squares). The recording should be done until there are significant measurable results.
Students will record the data on paper during the experiment and then using Online Charts create the appropriate charts at the conclusion of the experiment. Photos should also be taken throughout and then added to the final display of data.
Future experiments could also be done by changing some of the variables, for instance, keep the temperature the same but use different types of bread, add moisture to the slices, or put different amounts of sugar or lemon juice onto the slices. Ensuring that only one thing is varied at a time.
Please refer to Martin Shuttleworth’s website for detailed instructions on the experiment items and method https://explorable.com/mold-bread-experiment. Variations may need to be made to Shuttleworth’s experiment to suit the class, for example recording the growth of mold may need to be done every 3 days to cover the weekend break.
How to use this resource:
This resource is quite explanatory as you progress along, once clicking on “Design Your Chart” you are navigated through the website and prompted where to insert the required information. There are options to personalise your chart by changing colours and fonts etc. Upon completion of the chart you are able to print, save onto computer, email, or save online for future editing. Within the website there is also a Help section for FAQs and a Contact Us option.
Below is a short tutorial created by Michael McIlwraith in which he talks step by step through an example of creating a pie chart. Please note that some of the information he refers to may not be relevant as he is delivering this tutorial to adult learners undertaking a particular unit of study.
As a novice in the world of coding, I was looking for activities that made sense to me. Starting where most children start their learning journey, I went back to Foundation skills to look for inspiration.
To understand the abstract idea of something (a symbol) representing something else, I searched for concrete materials, to express the idea. What I found was a ‘decoder’.
This is a simple activity you can do with students to teach some basic principles of coding, without touching a computer :). A good confidence builder, children who believe they know nothing about coding, will be provided with opportunities to be successful. Strong links to History – decoders and deciphers were used, pre-computers, to communicate.
Subject: Digital Technologies
Year Level: 4-5
Strand: Knowledge and understanding
Sub strand: Representation of data
Data can be represented in different ways (ACTDIK008)
Select, and safely use, appropriate components and equipment to make solutions
To incorporate the use of computers and digital technologies in this activity, children can be directed to the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) of the USA’s website and engage with their online decoding games. The decoding games build on the same principle the children have just explored with their own handmade decoders.
The use of this resource extends and expands the children’s experience with coding in an historical and real world context.
General capabilities: Literacy, ICT, Numeracy, Critical & Creative thinking, Personal & Social capability
Links to other learning areas: History, Maths, Art
To make a decoder, you will need:
A paper fastener
A fine tip marker
Step 1: Cut out three circles per decoder out of cardboard. You will need one that is 8cm in diameter, one that is 6cm in diameter, and one that is 4cm in diameter. Note: The size of the circles is very important! If you change the size of the decoder, you will have to change the measurements for marking off the letter sections.
Detail is important in this step
Step 2: Colour your circles with coloured pencils, if desired.
Step 3: On the largest circle, make small pencil marks on the outside edge. You should end up with 27 sections. Detail is important in this step!
Step 4: Poke a hole through the center of the largest circle and the middle circle. Attach them with the paper fastener. The best way to find the middle of the circle is to use the compass. Then, use the ruler to draw a straight line from the paper fastener to each edge mark. Again, detail is important. You really want each of the sections to be equal in size, or your decoder will be difficult to use.
Step 5: Write the alphabet on the outside circle and put a ? in the 27th section. For the middle circle, you can either write the alphabet in order or mix it up. Then add the smallest circle to the decoder.
To write a message:
First, set the code. There are several ways to set the code.
Set the decoder where the “A” on the outside circle matches the first letter of the day of the week.
Use a “code word” with each message and set the decoder where “A” on the red circle matches the first letter of the code word.
Or, come up with your own system!
To write a message, find the letter you want on the outside (red) circle and write down the corresponding letter on the middle (blue) circle.
To read a message, find the letter on the middle (blue) circle, and write down the corresponding letter from the outside (red) circle.
Strands:Digital Technologies: knowledge and understanding
Digital Technologies: Process and Production skills
Sub strands:Investigate and Define
Representation and Production skills
What is it?
Codingame is the latest way to improve your programming skills while having fun. Codingame is a program that successfully turns learning and practicing coding into a game. It is a fun way to learn about complex topics that motivates students to learn quickly. Through this program students are able to solve challenging problems, learn new concepts and become inspired to learn more about programming and coding. This is a continual education tool and although it isn’t the perfect tool for beginners it is great at advancing students knowledge and skills.
How is it used?
Codingame is used and can be found though the link to the resource. The program has different options of how to play the ‘game’. Students are able to participate in fun challenges while learning pure code. These coding games are turn based, and the game is scored. The score is generated based on the code and how it meets the game specifications.
Are you game enough to make Oobleck with your students?
Know how to make marbled milk paper?
Challenge your students to find different ways to balance paper triangles!
One, two, three…Stixplosion!
Babble Dabble Do connects students by engaging their creativity, offering endless activities as Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics collide. Although online lessons are ready to be implemented into classrooms to support curious and inquisitive minds, parents can access the website too.
A former Architect and furniture designer, Ana created the website as a means of compiling fun, challenging activities that encourage imagination and creation in the minds of children.
Divided into the four areas of
Art for Kids
Science for Kids
Engineering for Kids
Design for Kids
Babble Dabble Do fosters a desire to question, inquire, investigate and most importantly, take steps to problem solve through setbacks and obstacles. With activities that directly link to the Australian curriculum Design and Technologies, Science, Mathematics, Arts, as well as opportunities to implement Digital Technologies, Babble Dabble Do is a ‘must’ in effective teaching and learning.
Facilitate and cater to the creative needs of your students by bookmarking this website!