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Learn to code and unlock a world of opportunities

November 8, 2021Danica M. Botts

Learn to code with Nearpod. In a world that is becoming more digital every day, it’s no surprise that educators around the world see the importance of teaching coding as a way to prepare students for the careers that await them. However, the benefits of incorporating coding into instruction go beyond career readiness. Coding instruction improves digital literacy, promotes SEL competencies like organizational skills, self-motivation, and analyzing situations, and can even be a form of self-expression and empowerment. For these reasons and more, bringing basic coding instruction into the classroom unlocks a world of opportunities.

Computer Science Education Week (CSED): Hour of Code

Inspire your students to become the next generation of leaders in STEM using free and ready-to-run computer science lessons, activities, and videos. You can save time planning an Hour of Code activity with our collection of prebuilt coding and computer science lessons.

Time to Climb Activities:

Draw it + Matching Pairs Activities:

Interactive Videos:


Digital Citizenship & Literacy (DCL) Collection:

Learn to code as a form of digital literacy

To be understood in any language, certain grammatical rules have to be followed such as subject then verb and end with punctuation. In coding, the student is the writer and the computer is the reader. In order for your message to be understood by the computer, you have to be specific in your commands. Syntax matters. No <>tag, “”quote or ;semicolon can be out of place. Understanding and being able to write these rules is a form of digital literacy.

Coding as Character 101

The attention to detail required to successfully write code reveals and shapes character. Will a “run” error message due to a missing forward slash cause your student to give up or go back line by line to find the mistake? The revisioning and editing process teaches grit and stresses the importance of having a growth mindset. Nearpod’s 21st Century Readiness Program connects skills, like coding and growth mindset, so I’m effortlessly teaching digital literacy, SEL, and college and career readiness topics in one class.
When working in groups, coding fosters collaboration! My students simultaneously learn the hard skill, coding, and soft skills involved with working in teams, both of which prepare them for careers in STEM. Relying on each other to be successful builds an appreciation for the strengths others bring to the table.

Coding as a form of self-expression and empowerment

Coding allows the student to take a blank page and treat it as a canvas. Guidance from sites like W3 Schools or Code Academy can help students set the foundational rules with HTML. They bring in their own personality through CSS, and make their web pages respond to the user through JavaScript. Who wouldn’t feel like a superhero knowing you took something from being void and without form to life!

Coding allows the student to take a blank page and treat it as a canvas. - @TeachingNChucks Click To Tweet

Block based coding sites like, Scratch, Minecraft, and Hopscotch allow students to create their own games and projects to no end! The possibilities are endless!

Coding opens a world of opportunity: Help students to become future ready

I work as a K-12 Instructional Technology Specialist. Prior, I spent 10 years as a classroom Social Studies teacher and department chair. I regret not doing more to introduce any of these concepts in my class. Though it was BYOD friendly and I frequently incorporated multimedia projects I realize now that it’s a false sense of due diligence. My students were still only consumers of technology. While proficiency in the basics is important, as digital natives they were capable of so much more! I could have taken them to a higher level by exposing them to the principles that would enable them to become designers of technology. A skill sought by every industry today.So I end with a challenge to you! Don’t miss your chance to open a world of opportunity for your students. Grand projects or Hour of Code offer ways to incorporate coding into every grade and in every content area. Get started by checking out this article from Edutopia!

Explore Coding

Nearpod has free, ready-to-run coding lessons for all grade levels so that every teacher can teach computer science. If your school subscribes to Nearpod’s 21st Century Readiness Program, you get even more resources to support coding initiatives.

Lessons Included:

  • Algorithms (K-2): Students identify an algorithm as a set of step-by-step instructions. Students learn to create, test and fix an algorithm to complete a specific task.
  • Let’s Get Started (3-8): 16 lesson set to learn a programming language.
  • Welcome to Webdev (9-12): Students investigate how websites are structured with web development. Students learn about HTML and how websites are developed and structured.

Access free lessons

Coding for all students

Nearpod’s 21st Century Readiness Program is a K-12 solution to help teachers embed important skills like  computer science, digital citizenship, coding, and more. Featuring lessons from Common Sense Education, this curriculum is used by schools and districts across the country to empower students to use technology safely, responsibly, and effectively. The Program also includes resources for SEL and college and career readiness, and teaches all three subject areas in conjunction with one another, instead of in isolation. 

Explore the program


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