Teach coding in kindergarten with this free to print candy corn stem challenge. It’s so simple, you can do this with your whole class- all you need is a bag of candy corn! Let’s go.
Before you print, you’ll need to understand how to teach coding in kindergarten and why on earth we’re going to use candy corn to do it. So read on.
Can a 5 year old learn coding? Of course they can! Most of the coding we teach in kindergarten is called directional coding as opposed to block coding.
Directional coding is coding that is giving directions very simply, usually through a series of arrows. This can be done on the computer or in an unplugged coding activity, such as this one.
In this hands-on candy corn STEM challenge, kids will be using the candy corn as arrows as they practice directional coding to get from start to finish. Then they’ll test out their code, to see if it works!
Coding may not be part of the learning standards now, but I know it will be! The world is shifting to be more and more technologically centered, and many future jobs or even hobbies may rely on the ability to code.
When we start coding in kindergarten, we build these future skills that children will need. It's like learning a language; the earlier you begin, the more fluent you will be.
Unplugged coding activities are done without a computer, so many kids can participate at once, building skills they'll need on computers.
The most typical mistake I see when I am teaching directional coding to kindergartners is the addition of redundant codes. When you are coding, if your arrow points down, you will not need another arrow until you want to change directions.
You should never have two arrows in a row that are pointing the same way.
Directional coding is about using basic arrows to direct your token item where to go. Only use an arrow when you are changing directions.
The only directions for our candy corn to point are:
Remember: there is no diagonal pointing here!
Code a path from start to finish, using candy corn. Test out the candy corn code by following it with a token of choice.
There is more than one way to complete the coding challenge. Here are the photos of the possible correct answers. Remember to pin or bookmark this page so you can check the answers against your kiddos' or simply follow their path.
If you feel especially passionate about kids coding, or even just want to make an independent center out of this activity, I've made a bundle of 6 black and white coding printables for you.
Each printable has 2 or more solutions so you'll have 12 additional directional coding activities to do with your kindergartners, along with your freebie.
Grab the bundle of 6 kindergarten printable coding worksheets for only $1.50. If you're looking for just the FREEBIE, just keep scrolling! : )
Check out our post of simply delightful Halloween activities for your leftover candy corn. Please follow and tag @forwardwithfun on social media if you share this activity!