Computer Science Education

What is Computer Science Education week?

Firstly, do you know this week is Computer Science Education week? Do you know how did it start and why? Starting in 2009 by the Association for Computing, it is a global event that now focuses on the importance of computer science. Involving teachers, parents and pupils, it seeks to raise awareness and understanding through activities. The ‘Hour Of Code’ is part of it and educates children on how coding is devised to produce everyday apps etc., games etc.

What teachers should know

You may not know that this year’s theme is centred on Grace Hopper. In case you do not know who she is, we have put together 5 facts about her.

  1. She was born on 9th December 1906, this year’s theme commemorates her birthday.
  2. Unbelievably, she was a pioneer in this field in the pre-war era, You may be unaware that she developed computer programming, software development and computer programming languages.
  3. As US Navy rear admiral, she contributed to top-secret projects in the Second World War.
  4. She co-wrote the user manual the first electromechanical computer in the US called MARK I.
  5. She was the first person to use the term ‘bug’ in relation to computers.

Computer Science Education lesson ideas

  1. You do not have to be a computer or science teacher to get involved in this awareness week. You could be a primary school teacher or history teacher and plan a lesson on this theme. So here we have listed 5 lesson ideas.
  2. Why not have your class join the Hour of Code, its free and you can learn how to register here
  3. You could get pupils to create a fact file on Grace Hopper, to learn about her life and the contribution she made.
  4. For group activities, why not challenge your students to designing a website page. You can use this activity in so many ways as it can involve art and design, English language, business studies amongst others.
  5. Why not take a look at some inspiring scientists in this field to include women and those from diverse backgrounds?
  6. Since it is near Christmas, you may want to treat your class to a film. You could break with tradition and view a film based on computers. Remember to be age appropriate, but there are quite a few out there. Examples are The Matrix, The Imitation Game and even an older one – War Games.