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Fontana Unified Elementary Students Explore Computer Science in Code to the Future Program

Students Photo Using Computer


FONTANA, CA – Chaparral and Dorothy Grant elementary school students demonstrated their skill at coding games and creating avatars for parents and community members at recent EPIC Build showcase events, highlighting student achievement under new Code to the Future programs.

Code to the Future is the nation’s leading creator of immersive computer science curricula, which engages students in technology- and coding-based lessons integrated into daily instruction and core subjects.

“We are seeing our teachers and students find new ways to apply coding concepts to other subjects every single day,” Chaparral Principal Dr. Andrea McClain said. “In a short time, we have seen how this instruction can empower students to collaborate with their peers and exercise creative problemsolving.”

Held in mid- and late-October, the EPIC Build showcases highlighted the computer science skills students have learned since Code to the Future instruction began in August. Each showcase held this year will focus on one of three cycles of computer science instruction: block coding, robotics and scripted coding.

During the first cycle of Code to the Future instruction, students explored block coding through Scratch, an online coding platform from MIT. Students used block coding to design games and create avatars, for which they then built interactive experiences.

“Many of our students are going home, logging on to Scratch and learning more about block coding for the fun of it,” Dorothy Grant Principal Anne-Marie Cabrales said. “They are even teaching their parents and siblings to code. It is exciting to see our students so engaged in what they are learning.”

Now, students are building on their block coding skills during the robotics cycle. Kindergarten and firstgrade students are learning how to apply engineering concepts by building a dream house and a community, respectively. Second- through fifth-graders are learning how to build and program Lego WeDo 2.0 and EV3 robots.

Dorothy Grant and Chaparral are the first two Code to the Future elementary schools in the Inland Empire. Teachers and staff received intensive Code to the Future training over the summer, ensuring that each school was ready to launch the program at the start of the 2018-19 school year.

Students and teachers receive ongoing support during weekly visits from Corazon Lara, their designated Code to the Future coach.

“Fontana Unified is committed to providing students with a rigorous, engaging educational experience that prepares students for the careers of today and tomorrow,” Fontana Unified Superintendent Randal S. Bassett said. “We are thrilled to see our Code to the Future schools thriving and look forward to seeing what our students will accomplish.”

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