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Features

Students at W.B.O. Intermediate School participate in Hour of Code

Sixth grade students in teacher Heather Giles’ (back, right) enhanced technology class at William B. Orenic Intermediate School are seen with projects they are working on to celebrate National Hour of Code. Here, they are with Principal Kelly Landers (back left).
Sixth grade students in teacher Heather Giles’ (back, right) enhanced technology class at William B. Orenic Intermediate School are seen with projects they are working on to celebrate National Hour of Code. Here, they are with Principal Kelly Landers (back left).

Students at two Troy Community School District 30-C schools spent much more than an hour coding technology projects during December’s National Hour of Code.

It’s important, according to Heather Giles, Enhanced Technology teacher at Troy’s William B. Orenic Intermediate School.

“Coding is becoming a literacy all students should know about,” Giles said. “You could compare coding to story-writing.We learn the parts that make a story, but we are not all going to write novels as a profession. Coding can be the same.

"It’s important to learn the structure of a computer program. We may not all end up being programmers, but it is helpful to know how code is written as we move into this digital age. We all have millions of lines of code in our hands every day.”

In Giles class,students learn how to code robots for such activities as running a maze, and code3D printers using block coding languages.

Their tools include Sphero Robots,LEGO Mindstorms, Hummingbird Bits, Makey Makey and some text-based coding activities. 

“It's so important to expose kids to what they can potentially do in their futures,”Jenna Woodland, Troy’s director of instruction, said in a news release. “There are currently many career opportunities for those who are knowledgeable in computer coding, even for those who don’t want a career in the IT field.”

Hour of Code is an international campaign with goals to improve student access to computer science. It is organized by the not-for-profit, Code.org.

The campaign provides free computer coding curricula for students and encourages schools to schedule at least one hour of coding into their students’ schedules every year in December. 

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