Hey everyone, it’s the Wednesday after my shift, and so I’m doing another post. So far that’s 2 weeks in a row! Give me an “A” for effort please?!?!
My wife took the above picture when the kids went to the beach recently. Don’t worry, they socially distanced and utilized masks to and from the car to an empty spot on the beach. This picture my wife took is one of the best moments we’ve ever been able to capture. So I decided to drop it into Photoshop and make it grayscale. Someday maybe I’ll get it printed out and framed. My wife may be the next Ansel Adams.
Kylie the Coder
The picture isn’t really related to the topic. As I’ve said in my recent posts “New School Year” and “Hindsight 2020“, Kylie has done a pretty much job of adapting to schoolwork virtually. Of course, she still wishes she had more time to see her friends and misses being outside more. However, in terms of academics she’s become very facile with using the computer. Her teacher challenged the kids to type 40 wpm, and after much trying and working hard, she was finally able to do it!
Unfortunately, outside of schoolwork, it’s been kind of hard to keep her challenged and engaged. I really want to try to limit their watching of TV to a reasonable amount. As such, I thought about having her give coding a try – you know – the simple drag and drop stuff for kids.
I wasn’t sure she would really be interested in it, but hey we’ll give it a try right? From my quick research, I found some free stuff to start with. They are:
The key to starting anything new is to package it with something you are interested in. In this particular case, Kylie wanted to try:
Essentially, it’s a little tutorial about dragging and dropping commands into a box which are mostly premade. There are some variables you can change in a drop down box, but it’s mostly just dragging and dropping stuff.
How did it go?
Kylie took to it pretty well. She enjoyed messing around with the commands doing the things she wanted. The excerpts of songs that are available were also popular songs that she liked. The ability to “control” the dancers and the dance that way she wanted to is pretty empowering.
Unfortunately, we haven’t gone back to it yet since that first time she did it. I am hoping she wants to revisit it again to make some more complex dances. However, I don’t want her to push things on her and make them unfun. I think a lot of programming and coding is really just messing around in the beginning. At some point something clicks and you understand just how powerful it can be. However, it can also be very frustrating when you just start.
It’s a balance of things.
code.org/learn has a lot of stuff for her to do, so we’ll just take it a little bit at a time. Like I said before, it’s been pretty impressive how quickly she has taken to liking computers. Minecraft has come up in talks between her and her friends so that may be another avenue we need to explore as well. I will probably buy Minecraft on iOS for her to try, and if she and her friends are interested I will create a server for them to safely play on.
We’ll see where things go.
Just me talking about Kylie’s possible interest in coding and Minecraft.
Agree? Disagree? Questions, Comments and Suggestions are welcome.
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