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Coding Made Accessible to ALL Learners with Guided Coding Stories


I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?

There are currently more Makerspaces, robotics clubs, and technology classes are in our schools than ever before. The reality is that the current model is not simple enough for all learners to succeed. There needs to be a level of understanding before students can successfully program a robot or build an algorithm for a block coding program.

This is where Guided Coding Stories comes to the rescue! We developed a way to build those foundational computer science concepts in a way that can be done with any learner at any age level. The best part is that the activities are incredibly engaging and built in a way to limit frustration (and increase perseverance).




I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?

Why Code with your Students with Special Needs?

I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."

I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?

Coding with students is really just like sequencing. The vocabulary is a little different but that is because we are using math and computer science terms instead of language terms.

I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?
For example, a coding sequence when put together, creates an algorithm that the computer understands as a program. In real life, a sequence is a set of instructions or steps that WE (instead of a computer) understand.
Basically, we are asking our students to be computational thinkers – to think like a computer.

Just like with the sequence of a story, if any of the steps are missing, the story is incomplete.

With coding, once the program is run, (the programmer presses start) the computer will go through the whole sequence (algorithm) without stopping. If there is a mistake (bug) in the algorithm then the end result will be wrong.

If a story sequence is missing one of the steps, then the end can’t happen the way it was meant to happen.

Not only does this make a great cross-curricular lesson, but it makes a fantastic life-skills lesson too. So many things we do each day require an algorithm!

Does it make you anxious to think about teaching computer science with students who are non-verbal or unable to show what they know?

I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?
Here is where Guided Coding Stories SHINE! With 3 levels of difficulty, you can use this resource with any learner. Even any age group that you think would like the story would benefit from practicing the coding activities. We guide you through all of the levels from errorless to higher level coding without ever needing to access a device. Students learn computer science vocabulary and concepts while playing!

 Teacher Guide to make it Simple

The Teacher Guide walks you through your own foundational understanding of what coding actually is. There are examples throughout so you can feel confident knowing you're doing it right. 
I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?

  • I highly recommend playing a game called Lightbot if you want to take your coding knowledge to the next level. There is an iOS app, or you can play it on ABCYa
  • A great intro video for your students (and you) is called Algorithm Al on YouTube. It is a simple but catchy song and animated video perfect for your young learners. 

Would this be good for a general education classroom or computer lab setting?

I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?
Absolutely! And I'm glad you asked. The 2nd and 3rd level of these activities is going to challenge any learner regardless of their academic level. This is problem solving, and we all need practice with this skill. Since students have the option of making their own story grid, there is an endless challenge provided. We only give you one answer key but you can challenge students to make the own along with their custom story grids. 

Here's the plan

I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?
  • Have the materials ready
  • Read the book to the class or group
  • Model how to work through the Story Grid the first time
  • From there, everything is set up for the students to follow through to completion


I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?You probably already have these amazing sequencing books in your classroom or school library, so why not take them to the next level with these post-reading activities? It is a sequencing lesson and a computer science lesson all in one, so it meets several standards across the curriculum. 


So, what are you waiting for? Print and prep these engaging activities so that you can further technology education for this generation. It is hard to think of a job that doesn't require memorizing a sequence or algorithm. Starting this skill at a young age and helping students to generalize it will pay off forever!

Buy Guided Coding Stories

I've heard it time and time again, "there aren't great resources out there for teaching computer science with our special needs population."    I get it, using the robots, block coding, even the code.org lessons is seriously challenging in this setting. Without first building the coding language and concepts, how could we ever expect any students to be successful with more advanced coding?

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Brittany Washburn
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