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It’s summertime and that means it’s pool time around here! Our boys love to swim and one of their favorite activities is to search for ‘buried treasure’ in the pool. In this activity, kids get to hunt for treasure in the pool! Of course, I added a little STEM fun to teach our kids the important concepts of algorithms and sequencing.
This screen-free activity introduces some of the basic concepts of coding! You need to have the basics before you can understand how to use computer programs to program apps and programs.
What is an Algorithm?
An algorithm refers to a set of step-by-step instructions for performing a task or solving a problem. In this activity, the ‘programmer’ will need to give the ‘robot’ a set of instructions to find the buried treasure in the pool.
What is a sequence?
A sequence refers to the order of steps in an algorithm. In order to get the buried treasure, the ‘programmer’ will have to give steps in the correct order. If the steps are out of order, the robot won’t’ find the treasure.
What you need?
- Diving Toys
How to play:
The programmer throws the ‘buried treasure’ (diving toy) in the water. The robot (parent or friend) has to follow the instructions of the programmer to find the treasure. The programmer gives the instructions one by one to start. e.g. Swim forward for 3 seconds, then turn left.
For an extra challenge, the programmer will need to give the entire ‘code’ or algorithm at once. If the robot lands in the wrong spot, the programmer will get a chance to ‘debug’ their code and try again!
That’s it! It really is that simple to introduce kids to coding!
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Katie is mom of two rambunctious boys and a self-proclaimed super nerd. With a background in neuroscience, she is passionate about sharing her love of all things STEM with her kids. She loves to find creative ways to teach kids computer science and geek out about coding and math. You can find her blogging at Teach Your Kids Code.