coding update: platform trials

As mentioned in my previous post, I’m spending some time exploring options for use with our coding workshop for 7th and 8th. This week, I have played with a variety of platforms that would enable our students to learn various languages, specifically javascript and html/css. I have looked at 3 options this week. Here is a brief review, so far:

Code School

codeschoollogo

Course: Java Script Road Trip I

This looked the most promising to me because I love the video tutorial aspect as well as the downloadable pdf’s for “quick access”. The tricky part with Code School at this point is when I get stuck there is no way to get help directly on the site other than the introductory video. I was stuck in a spot with Strings yesterday and had to “buy” (using points) my way to a solution. I would have like to work through it but the feedback method is points related rather than success related. (Success in my intrinsically driven mind.) I have found working with a notepad for solutions to help “see” the process has been helpful.

At some point, I’m going to max out on the free content on Code School and that will make me sad.

Codecademy

codecademy

Course: JavaScript

I am 7% complete with the course, though it feels like I’m working through a lot.  This is giving me hands on practice but I’m not sure yet how it all strings (hahaha, bad JS pun!) together to make something tangible.  (More on that topic in a minute.) I find the hint button on Codecademy super helpful. It has led to me figure out my own problems through trial and error.

Code Avengers

codeavengers

Course: Intro to Game Development (Java Script)

I finished level 1 of the free trial of JS. This was a neat tutorial in that it provided a way for me to manipulate the code and expand it and actually see it “live” in a window. I could see the code that I was manipulating become a game. That was pretty rocking. Alas, if I want to go to level 2, I have to purchase it for $39. I do have access to a lot of other material that is free, but I’d love something sequential.

 

My biggest Luddite question in all of this is…when I actually want to write code and build something that translates into something real-where do I write it? I understand how to translate html from notepad to a browser, but I’m not sure how to translate lines of anything else into a “real game” or app. I feel really really dumb asking this question, but can anyone give me some feedback? (Please be gentle and kind-I’m a tech integrator not a CS teacher by trade!)

Happy Coding and if you are at #iste2014, send me some swag and ideas!!  😉

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One thought on “coding update: platform trials

  1. kedavis99 July 4, 2014 / 2:48 am

    Thank you for sharing your experience with these programs, I haven’t had time to investigate any coding resources yet though I do want to make them a bigger part of my tech classes this year.

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