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Prepping for the Hour of Code

posted Nov 16, 2015, 6:01 AM by wafflem@calhounisd.org

Submitted by Justin Cowen, 

Dickinson-Iron Intermediate School District, REMC 21

The Hour of Code is coming fast upon us, December 7th-13th, and educators from around the state and world are looking for resources to help educate young learners. Over the past few years there has been an explosion in not only the amount of resources, but also the quality! There are websites that are built for the littlest of our students and websites that are built for only those that have a doctorate in Computer Programming. Here are a few resources that you or fellow educators can find useful as you prep for the Hour of Code.

Resources guaranteed to work in modern browsers and on Chromebooks:


File:Scratch Logo.png



Code.org offers Lesson Plans that have:

  • Online and Offline Projects

  • Video Tutorials

  • Amazing Practice Problems

Scratch is one of the most popular beginning visual programming languages. Here are some things to try out:

In CodeCombat learners type code but with a visual twist. Can be used to learn the following languages:

  • Python

  • JavaScript

  • CoffeeScript

  • Clojure

  • Lua

Using Lightbot learners play a game similar to the old arcade game Q*Bert in which they must program the Lightbot to light up certain squares.

Resources for iOS:





Bee-Bot is great for the young coders out there. Learners can program four directions into the bee to help it reach the flower. Bee-Bot features:

  • Easy to use interface

  • Graphic inputs

  • Simple...very very simple

For a simplified version of visual programing, educators and learners can use Daisy the Dinosaur. It features:

  • Simple steps

  • Loops

  • Conditional Statements

ScratchJr is Scratch programing without the words. It is simplified down but great for all age levels. It features:

  • Similar look to Scratch

  • Visual Programming

  • Loops

  • Conditional Statements

  • Variety of Sprites

Hopscotch is similar to Scratch but offers some really amazing features that take full advantage of the iPad. Students can program in such things as “When iPad is Shaken” and more. It features:

  • Visual Programming

  • iOS Interactions

  • Loops

  • Conditional Statements

  • Variety of Sprites