Year 6 Are Introduced to ‘Algorithms’ and Programing

Elmhurst School for Boys

26th September 2014

In Year 6, the boys have been learning about programming and coding in ICT. They learnt what an ‘algorithm’ is and how computer systems use algorithms to follow instructions and carry out a task.

The children started by downloading a program called Scratch 1.4. They were then introduced to the scratch platform for which they will use control ‘sprites’. A sprite is a character, such as a ghost or an animal, which can be programmed using a set of instructions.

The boys explored with writing ‘scripts’ for their sprite and testing to see if their script worked. If their script did not work, they had to go back and ‘debug’ the code by finding errors in the instructions.

The boys were then tasked with the challenge of importing an appropriate background for their sprites to move on.

The next step is to understand how to program the sprites and objects to interact with each other. In doing so, the boys will be able to create their very own computer games and share these with their friends.

The purpose of this activity is to help the children develop an understanding of programming and writing code. This will enable the boys to have a deeper understanding of computer science and will start to develop their curiosity of how computers actually work. Furthermore, the boys are able to express their creativity is a fun and exciting way.

At home: To support your child’s learning at home, you may wish to download the scratch 1.4 program to your home PC. This is a very safe and widely used program by children world-wide. The boys will then be able to practice what they have learnt in class by writing algorithms and scripts. They can then start to put all the pieces together when constructing their very own video game.

Coming up, the children will be exploring a different coding program called ‘Kodo.’ This program uses the same basic fundamental idea as Scratch by allowing the children a platform to write code and debug instructions for their very own video game.

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