From an Hour of Code to years of Computer Science

This is the fifth year of the Hour of Code. As we look back on what’s happened since just last year, the results are incredible. Canada, Ireland, Malaysia, New Zealand, and Romania all announced national plans for computer science. And in the U.S., the federal government and 40 different states are expanding plans or funding for K-12 computer science.

And this year, we want everyone to go beyond an Hour of Code for CS Education Week. With an incredible groundswell of support and attention, it’s the ideal time to put the spotlight on computer science programs across the country. So today we’re calling on administrators, teachers, and parents to make lasting change and help bring computer science to your school districts.

Implementing computer science in your district may seem like a daunting task, especially when there are too few computer science teachers. But most of the teachers we have already worked with to help implement computer science courses were not prepared to teach CS. They were math, science, English, and history teachers who were passionate about the opportunities computer science brings students. Every student deserves the opportunity to learn computer science — no matter their background or where they live. And you can give them the chance.

Code.org has already partnered with more than 120 School districts across the country and 600,000 teachers that use our platform. Let Code.org’s network of Regional Partners across the US help you bring computer science to your school or district.

And to help you get started, we’re happy to announce that…

…the first new Hour of Code activities are live on Code.org!

We’re so excited to feature brand new activities again this year (with even more activities on the way!). And, all the teacher and student favorites from last year are still available. With over 200 new options, and the ability to filter by grade, experience level, and classroom hardware, everyone can find the perfect activity. We even have new choices that work offline (no internet needed) and without computers.

Try some of our teacher’s favorite activities like:

  • Google Doodle: where students of all ages can make their own Google Doodle in Scratch.
  • Play that tune: an activity where middle and high school students learn to make music with code.
  • Compute IT: perfect for students that already have some coding chops under their belt. Challenge them with this fun game.
  • Getting loopy: computers aren’t required to do the Hour of Code, and this activity from previous years is a teacher favorite to teach computational thinking concepts.

And, if you’ve already gone beyond an hour, we have many choices for students familiar with coding. These activities are a great way to introduce your class to text-based programming, a new language, or just a novel approach to apply a concept they’ve already learned.

Do something special for the Hour of Code this CS Education Week

  • Have every student in the school do an Hour of Code. Recruit older students to help teach the youngest learners.
  • Host an assembly or after school event to celebrate CS Education Week.
  • Host an evening Hour of Code event to show parents what the children are learning, and why CS is important.

To help make your event extra special:

How can I go beyond an Hour of Code this year?

CS Education Week is an excellent time for you to show how computer science makes an impact beyond the classroom and to encourage new students to sign up for future classes.

  • Pledge to expand access and diversity in CS at your school.
  • If your students enjoyed an Hour of Code in the past, offering them a longer course will help empower them to not just use technology, but to create it.
  • Help ensure your students can continue to learn computer science by enrolling in Code.org’s professional development. We offer hands-on workshops and online support with over 50,000 teachers completing the program. Whether you’re brand new to computer science or an experienced tech teacher, we have a program for you.

The Hour of Code is just the beginning — with your leadership, it’s the beginning of access to full computer science courses for every student in every school.

Hadi Partovi, Code.org

These new activities would not be possible without our teachers who spent months playing and testing these activities to make sure anyone can find the right one for their class. Thank you!

And a big thank you to all of the following organizations for creating activities for the Hour of Code:

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.