CS4K5 Etoys

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CS4K5 Etoys

Harness, Kathleen
Hello Everyone,
I am happy to announce a new set of Etoys projects and lesson plans for elementary students. I hope you will find them useful and enjoyable.  

CS4K5 Programming with Etoys
The CS4K5 Etoys curriculum introduces programming to elementary students. There are six to eight projects for each grade level. The project topics are based in typical grade level subjects from science, math, art, music, and language arts. The lesson plans are referenced to the Common Core Standards for Mathematics and English Language Arts, Bloom?s Taxonomy/Cognitive Domain, and the National Educational Technology Standards.
The projects are not a curriculum for mathematics or for Language Arts but rather are intended to give children interesting opportunities to apply and to extend their knowledge in these and other subjects. The Etoys environment, script tiles, tools, and techniques are introduced in moderate steps from one year to the next so students build knowledge, skill, understanding, and confidence.  Etoys is a playful environment and so are the projects.

Two examples:
CS4K5 Grade 1 Bugs
Students will: Draw a bug and script it to turn, go forward, and bounce.
Copy the bug and find that the copies will have the original scripts.
Learn and apply a vocabulary of quantity, locations, and time: top and bottom, directions (up, down, left, right), and concepts such as more than half, less than half, above the line, below the line, one minute, one second, half a minute/thirty seconds.
Estimate when most/least insects are in one area of the screen stop the script, and count them.
Add a clock from Supplies.
Add a random number generator tile to a turn and/or forward tile and observe how the insect moves differently.

CS4K5 Grade 5: Pentatonic Music
Students will: modify the size and color of an ellipse from Supplies. Make a script with the forward tile. Use the Sound tiles to assign a frequency to the ellipse. Choose specific frequencies for the sound tiles. Use conditional statement: if obtrudes. Use a conditional statement to control when a script is paused. Use a random number to change the heading. Make copies of the ellipse modify their color, size and script. Use a playfield to limit the motion. Experiment with different lengths and widths for the playfield. Experiment with forward by values to control the polyphony. Experiment with starting location of shapes to control the polyphony. Experiment to control the location so the shapes never touch simultaneously, or so they do touch simultaneously every cycle. Add a title. Add a flap if additional information is needed.

The end result is chance music of indefinite length based in the pentatonic scale. Students can, and do, play with these projects long after they finish making the project. They have made a toy.

EtoysIllinois is based in the Office for Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education  at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Overview Info:
No prior programming knowledge is needed.
The Quick Guides are referred to when the lesson mentions a tool, tile, menu, or technique.
The lessons require one 40 minute Etoys class per week.
There is no homework.
The lesson plans are available as word documents and as PDFs.
The projects are informative and entertaining books, games, and puzzles.
The projects are intended to be enjoyed long after the programmer finishes creating them.
Some projects take 4-6 class periods to complete; children will persist.
The projects are designed to give students time to experiment and to make decisions.
Student projects based on these lessons can be found in the EtoysIllinois.org Library Collection.

I look forward to hearing from you.
Best wishes for success to you and your students.
Kathleen Harness
February 16, 2011