Cross Creek Elementary School Integrates Coding and Robotics

Cross Creek Elementary School Integrates Coding and Robotics

Cross Creek Elementary School Integrates Coding and Robotics

Cross Creek Elementary School is located in Thomasville, Georgia. The school is a Title 1 School with an enrollment of 825+ students. Students at Cross Creek are in 3rd and 4th grades. This guest post was written by Michele Dechman, Coding & Robotics Teacher for Cross Creek Elementary School. You can follow her on Twitter @MicheleDechman.

Why Coding?

Coding and robotics have been designated as a priority at Cross Creek Elementary School and within our school district. We recognize the importance of teaching coding skills to all of our students: gifted learners, high achieving students, early intervention students, and those students with disabilities. All children can learn coding skills. When students are exposed to coding, they are learning ways to solve problems and work collaboratively to reach success. In addition, coding can reinforce and enrich all academic subjects and help teachers meet state standards. Coding is a way for students to realize that mistakes are okay, and that through dedication and perseverance, there are other ways to reach success.

The Thomas County Schools Difference

As mentioned earlier, our district has made coding a priority. It is one component of our technology instruction. The vision of the Thomas County Schools Instructional Technology Department is to provide all students with access to state-of-the-art technology resources, which will increase their ability to become empowered learners and responsible digital citizens who have the necessary skills and proficiencies for the next level of education and today’s workforce.
 

“Coding is a way for students to realize that mistakes are okay, and that through dedication and perseverance, there are other ways to reach success.”

 

Cross Creek students work on team-building skills in Michele Dechman’s coding rotation.

By staying up-to-date on the latest instructional technology tools, we work together to provide leadership and support to teachers, staff members, and students as they use technology to transform learning.

How does Tynker fit in? 

Tynker was used in our STEM classroom last school year as a resource, but not in the coding and robotics class. Tynker was used as a fun yet educational resource along with Project Lead the Way to reinforce basic coding and computer science concepts. Several schools in our system recently received The Literacy for Learning, Living and Leading in Georgia (L4GA) Grant. This grant has now allowed Cross Creek to purchase a Tynker site license. Our students will now be able to log in individually, and we will be able to use the reports feature of Tynker to track progress and growth. After we have used the program over the course of the school year, we can then determine how Tynker will contribute to our District and state goals.
 
In the short time that our students have used Tynker, they have really enjoyed their experiences using the program. In addition to the variety of options, several like to code and create their own stories. Based on our STEM class special’s rotation, students only visited once every 10 days. Tynker was in addition to Project Lead the Way and other additional required academic instruction. The time limitation was always a struggle. We hope to hear great things this year since we will have the Tynker site license, and the program will be part of our Clever app which can be accessed outside of our STEM classroom.
 

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Want to learn more? 

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Tynker enables children to learn computer programming in a fun and imaginative way. More than 60 million kids worldwide have started learning to code using Tynker.

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