At Jones Elementary the Library Media Specialist, Allyssa Loya, and Instructional Technology Specialist, Kay Orr, have been working together to create a Code Crunchers Club.
Code Crunchers is a “lunch and learn” opportunity for students in grades 1-6 to experience a variety of coding activities. Each teacher sends one student on Tuesdays during their lunch time to the library to participate.
“I look at the library as a place of knowledge, not just a place for reading,” said Ms. Loya. “If you look at it that way you create life-long learners and life-long users of the library. That’s why it’s important to offer this program.”
Activities range from board games sharpening logic skills to coding with a variety of devices, including Code-a-pillar, Code & Go Robot Mouse, Blue Bot, Ollie, Ozobot and Finch Robot.
Older students learn basics of electronic breadboards and components including an opportunity to work with an Arduino and Raspberry Pi.
“We’ve built vertically, starting with kids in elementary, middle school and high school,” said Ms. Orr. “Robotics at each of these levels looks different and the programming that goes along with it looks different too.”
Ms. Loya and Ms. Orr hope as Code Crunchers grows at Jones Elementary, other schools will begin to do something similar.
“We simply believe that coding is an important skill to learn,” said Ms. Loya.