Name: Karen Hinge
School: Whangarei Intermediate School
Name of coding activity: Geometry in Action
Describe the coding activity that you want to be considered for the award?
In this learning activity, year 7 and 8 students use code to explore geometry. Using Tynker (www.tynker.com/) students enter a teacher designed code, which although meaningless on its own, will build endless variations of geometric patterns when students enter their own values.
Students explore geometric principles using the prescribed code as a base for developing geometric patterns. In doing so, they learn a lot about shapes and angles. They solve problems and learn through trial and error. They collaborate and share and they also create a beautiful piece of virtual art. You can see my instructions here.
Why did you choose to use this activity?
I had only recently introduced my class to coding and although they were enjoying some simple activities, I wanted to integrate coding into my classroom learning and teaching programmes. I also wanted to move away from prescriptive coding activities and help the students to use code as a way of exploring and embedding their learning. Our current maths topic – ‘Measurement and Geometry’ enabled this perfectly.
How did you implement and use it?
I shared this document with my students and left them to explore:
They were totally engaged. Although I did not really consider it to be a collaborative activity, I soon noticed that the children were sharing, discussing, helping each other and problem solving together. I found that my maths lessons had to be extended as students were reluctant to stop coding.
What outcomes has it achieved for you and your class?
The students were very motivated by this activity, engagement levels were high. Students have been able to create some beautiful pieces of virtual art. Many of them are very proud of their work. In producing their art, they learnt a lot about code and about geometry. You can see some examples of the learning here: