Teaching Creativity, Algorithms, Programming at the Early School Stage - the Role of Visual Programming Applications with Game Code Lab Application Case Study
Maciej Rostański, University of Dabrowa Gornicza (Poland)
Wojciech Borczyk, University of Silesia in Katowice (Poland)
Robert Lipka, University of Silesia in Katowice (Poland)
The article presents the concept of teaching the art of computer programming, algorithms construction, sequence and reason-effect logic, beginning with so-called visual programming. The common misconception is that the informatics and computer science education is often mistaken with information technology education. In early education, the programming languages and concepts education process is often believed to be too complex, tedious and wearisome for children. However, visual programming applications with simple references to application and vision of benefits, mixed with creativity opportunities and fun-inducing environment can bring positive results in the field. The reasons for that thesis are given, based on a literature review, confronted with practical real-life scenario. Multiple programming languages suitable for early-stage education are discussed, and a case study of teaching application Game Code Lab, polish application for primary school education, is given and presented in detail with a real-life scenario, as being able to deliver an environment for improving creativity, programming skills and understanding of computational thinking. The aim of the article is to help teachers in planning, conducting and evaluating their early-stage programming and algorithmic thinking classes.
Keywords: Computational thinking, programming education, creativity, algorithms, Game Code Lab