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Creative Constructor
Lab Virtual
Leadership Exchange
at ISTELive 21
Edtech Advocacy &
Policy Summit

Coding to Build Community

Participate and share

Participate and share : Poster

Wednesday, December 2, 3:00–4:00 pm PST (Pacific Standard Time)

James Gill  
Explore how to use coding to build community at the class, school and district level. Learn how students who take part in these coding events not only develop great computational thinking skills, but also develop great collaborative skills.

Audience: Curriculum/district specialists, Teachers, Technology coordinators/facilitators
Skill level: Intermediate
Attendee devices: Devices not needed
Topic: Computer science & computational thinking
Grade level: PK-12
Subject area: STEM/STEAM, Computer science
ISTE Standards: For Students:
Innovative Designer
  • Students know and use a deliberate design process for generating ideas, testing theories, creating innovative artifacts or solving authentic problems.
  • Students develop, test and refine prototypes as part of a cyclical design process.
Computational Thinker
  • Students understand how automation works and use algorithmic thinking to develop a sequence of steps to create and test automated solutions.

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

In this presentation we will feature how we use block based coding tools like Sphero, Micro:bit, and Scratch to create collaborative opportunities for students to tackle real world problems. Students in all activities must develop computational thinking skills as well as the ability to problem solve, prototype, and reflect on what is working and what is not to look for solutions.


We will spend about 10 to 12 minutes on each of the following topics:
The Coquitlam School District Sphero Challenge - a multi-day event where teams of middle school students come together to try to use a Sphero to perform a real world task.

The Technology Mentorship Programs - a weekly program where older students model good thinking and citizenship skills on a collaborative task with younger students in a mentorship relationship.

The MicroPet Project - older students design a virtual pet for a younger student using Microbit. The goal is to really listen to the younger student and use coding skills to create a pet that fits the younger "clients'" description.

Coding for Social Skills: students find ways to code Microbit to stay connected with friends or in other, non-game related tasks. We highlight the process two students went through to create a friendship bracelet using Micro:bit.

Supporting research

The Sphero Challenge

Principals and Vice Principals take the Sphero Challenge

James Gill Classroom - Classroom of the Future Contest video

More [+]


James Gill, School District #43 / Coquitlam

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