Coding the Agent

Coding the Agent

11-13 yrs old

Computer Science

Science

Technology

This lesson design by Kirsty Bridge, Wallan Primary School mixes physical and digital manipulations to learn the logic and efficiencies of coding.

avatar Submitted By: Victorian Minecraft Innovators

April 28, 2021

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Skills

  • Collaboration
  • Communication
  • Critical Thinking

External References

Kirsty Bridge Presentation for DLTV December 2020

Kirsty unpacks the main activities in this lesson

Coding FUNdamentals: New Computer Science Lessons for Students of All Ages

The Coding FUNdamentals lessons introduce and teach students the basics of coding, from algorithms, sequencing, and loops all the way to conditionals.

Coding FUNdamentals: Block 1 Scope and Sequence

Scope and sequence of activities and US standards addressed.

Coding FUNdamentals

*The FUNdamentals BLOCK 1 lessons can be opened from within the Minecraft game by navigating to the Computer Science Kit.

Supporting Files

Digital Technologies Year 6 Minecraft Coding Planner


Term Planner for Year 6

Block 1 Lesson 1 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 2 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 3 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 4 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 5 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 6 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Coding the Agent Student Examples


Examples of students work translating between code and Lego builds

Learning Objectives

  • Learning Intention: We are learning to block code in Minecraft.
  • Learning Intention: We are learning to build using logical thinking.

Guiding Ideas

The program requires both explicit teaching and guided student activity across 9 lessons/weeks based around the 6 Coding FUNdamentals BLOCK 1 Lessons.  Full details of the teaching, learning intentions, activity, success criteria  and debrief for each week can be found in the Digital Technologies Year 6 Minecraft Coding Planner (download from Supporting Files).

Student Activities

Start with a recap on coding basics. In Minecraft work through challenge 1 as a class on the IWB, invite students to add code blocks. Students discuss with partner most efficient way to complete code using the code blocks provided. Discuss why is it important to be efficient in coding? Students individually log into Minecraft and navigate to Coding FUNdamentals BLOCK 1 Lesson 1.

Recap on making code efficient. Why is this important? Teacher to present a long string of code and students discuss how to refine the code.  Work through challenge 1 together on Fundamentals lesson 2. Students individually complete challenges in Coding FUNdamentals Lesson 2. Teacher to bring groups to the carpet to discuss their code.

Share with students different examples of conditionals. Students discuss with partner what each conditional does. Demonstrate the use of an, ‘if_then_else’. Work through the first challenge of Coding FUNdamentals together on IWB, using a conditional. Students individually complete FUNdamentals Lesson 3.

Demonstrate the concept of a nested loop using a cube as an example. Recap on why nested loops are important and why we need to make our code efficient. Complete challenge 1 on the IWB and discuss the use of a nested loop. Students individually complete challenges in Coding FUNdamentals Lesson 4.

Open challenge 1 Lesson 5 and demonstrate using a negative conditional on the IWB. Students individually complete challenges in Coding FUNdamentals Lesson 5.

Open Coding Fundamentals lesson 6 on the IWB. Explain students will be working in teams to complete these challenges. Demonstrate how to take a snip of code and add it to Padlet. Students complete challenges in Coding FUNdamentals Lesson 6 as a team with one student hosting the world. Students snip code and add it to Padlet as evidence for reports.

Demonstrate building a cube using the clear Beebot mat and building blocks. Walk the squares, leaving a block behind each step. Choose a student to record the code on the IWB. Can we refine this using a loop? Nested loop? Conditional? Students use Lego blocks and men to ‘act out’ their code, recording code I Minecraft as they go. Once their cube is built in Lego, press go on the agent and see if he creates the same.

Recap on ‘acting out the code’ from last week. Did the agent always do what you had expected?  Choose 2 students to act out code and record on IWB. Demonstrate creating a more complex shape, e.g. stairs. Students work with a partner to create a more complex build using Lego and recording code in the agent. Did the agent create exactly what you did in Lego?  Can someone give me an example of how they refined their code?

Recap on ‘acting out the code’ from last week. Have a ready built item prepared. Choose a student to try to replicate the item in code on the IWB. Students build an item in Lego for their partner to code. Students must have the correct code recorded to assess each other.

Performance Expectations

Success Criteria

Students can:

  • move agent forwards, backwards, left and right
  • discuss ways to make code more efficient, using a ‘repeat loop’, using a ‘conditional loop’, using a ‘nested loop’, using a ‘negative conditional’.
  • use repeat loops, conditionals, nested loops and negative conditionals to complete challenges in teams
  • explain how they have made code more efficient
  • break a large task into smaller steps
  • use Lego to demonstrate code and code the agent to replicate what was built in Lego
  • complete a code challenge set by their partner.

Victorian Curriculum

Technology
Technologies: Creating Digital Solutions

  • Define problems in terms of data and functional requirements, drawing on previously solved problems to identify similarities
  • Design, modify and follow simple algorithms represented diagrammatically and in English, involving sequences of steps branching, and iteration
  • Develop digital solutions as simple visual programs

Skills

  • Collaboration
  • Communication
  • Critical Thinking

External References

Kirsty Bridge Presentation for DLTV December 2020

Kirsty unpacks the main activities in this lesson

Coding FUNdamentals: New Computer Science Lessons for Students of All Ages

The Coding FUNdamentals lessons introduce and teach students the basics of coding, from algorithms, sequencing, and loops all the way to conditionals.

Coding FUNdamentals: Block 1 Scope and Sequence

Scope and sequence of activities and US standards addressed.

Coding FUNdamentals

*The FUNdamentals BLOCK 1 lessons can be opened from within the Minecraft game by navigating to the Computer Science Kit.

Supporting Files

Digital Technologies Year 6 Minecraft Coding Planner


Term Planner for Year 6

Block 1 Lesson 1 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 2 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 3 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 4 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 5 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Block 1 Lesson 6 Coding Fundamentals Educator Guide


Coding the Agent Student Examples


Examples of students work translating between code and Lego builds