Digital Technologies Curriculum
Level 7 - 8

Level 5 - Level 6

Creating Digital Solutions

Content Description

  • Define problems in terms of data and functional requirements, drawing on previously solved problems to identify similarities.
  • Design a user interface for a digital system, generating and considering alternative design ideas.
  • Design, modify and follow simple algorithms represented diagrammatically and in English, involving sequences of steps, branching, and iteration.
  • Develop digital solutions as simple visual programs.
  • Explain how student-developed solutions and existing information systems meet current and future community and sustainability needs.

Lesson Ideas

Online Resources

Aitken Creek Computers
  • Rock, Paper, Scissors: this activity builds on the classic game of Rock, Paper, Scissors. Students start by playing the traditional game and then explore the context of computer modelling by viewing a model that uses the same rules. Students decode a computer program to learn basic concepts.Project GUTS
  • Posti: an online game to teach students about social media and interpreting friends' posts. Students can go back and play the game multiple times and get to know the characters' personalities.
  • Conditionals with cards: students learn about algorithms and conditional statements. Students explore circumstances when certain parts of programs should run and when they should not and determine whether a conditional is met based on criteria.Tinkersmith
  • The Muddy City - Minimal Spanning Trees: this lesson supports students to explore different types of networks and investigate ways to efficiently link objects in a network.CS Unplugged
  • Microwave Racing Video: this lesson is focused on human-computer interaction, usability and usability evaluation.Queen Mary University of London
  • The Emotion Machine Activity: this lesson introduces students to programming, instruction sequences and computational thinking. Queen Mary University of London

  Videos

  • My Robotic Friend: this lesson idea can be adapted for a variety of age and abilities and could be conducted with a whole class, groups of students with older student support or in small groups. It requires students to problem solve using computational thinking and write a set of instructions for a 'robot' to follow. This idea could be implemented over multiple lessons, enabling students to explore and start thinking about how a real robot works and conduct some research about it. Code.org

Units of Work

Online Resources

Scratch
  • eSmart Digital License: recently sponsored by Google enabling the foundation to offer it free for all Australian Year 6 students. The Digital Licence helps young people understand how to behave respectfully and appropriately online. It sets out to help young people learn about the implications of things they do online. The teacher creates an account so that the students can access it and work through the content. Alannah Madeline Foundation
  • How computer games are made: students explore algorithms that are used to design computer games. They design and implement a simple interactive game that keeps score. Rachel Crellin, DET

Resources

Online Resources

Bully Stopers
  • Growing Up Digital Classroom Resources: link to downloadable classroom activities, videos, interactive learning modules and advice sheets and other useful resources to use in the classroom. Department of Education and Training
  • Computer science in a box: this resource booklet was produced to be used for students ages 9-14 to teach lessons about how computers work, while addressing critical maths and science concepts such as number systems, algorithms and manipulating variables and logic. National Centre for Women and IT
  • Computer Science in Algebra, (free, web): has teamed up with Bootstrap to develop a curriculum that teaches algebraic and geometric concepts through computer programming. The twenty lessons focus on concepts including order of operations, the Cartesian plane, function composition and definition, and solving word problems, within the context of video game design. Full lesson plans for teachers to follow, student workbook and self-paced online course for students to complete. Students will need to login to complete the course, however teachers could create generic student logins to protect student identity. Extension: Students use Scratch to design their game with their understanding of coordinates and programming. Code.org
  • CS Unplugged: explore the CS Unplugged website for lesson ideas and resources to teach the Digital Technologies curriculum, teachers create a login to gain access to further classroom materials. CS Unplugged
  • Studio Code.org - students complete 20 hour courses. The courses are sequential and become more complex. Studio Code.org

  Videos

Apps and Software

Level 5 and 6 students
  • Code Monkey (free, web): Code Monkey is an online game that teaches students how to program using a text programming language, called Coffee Script.
  • Dots and Dash Robots (Paid, programmable robots): these robots can be programmed using an iPad or Android device. Lesson plans for teachers are also available.
  • GameStar Mechanic (free, web): teaches students to design their own video games. Students complete different self-paced quests while learning to build game levels. The site integrates critical thinking and problem-solving tasks.
  • Hakitzu (free, Apple, Android app): learning through games. Students use JavaScript to program their way around the strategic game.
  • Kids Ruby (computer, free basic package): supports students to learn how to program. Kids Ruby is a programming language code which students can see, run and view the outputs all at the same time.
  • LEGO Mindstorms (paid, LEGO kit, app and computer software): build and program robots and machines using LEGO Mindstorms kits. Designed for older and advanced coders. The EV3 brick comes with motors, sensors, remote controls, which are all powered by the EV3 brick that connects to a computer. After creating the robot, students can use the drag and drop interface on either an iPad for drag and drop programming via Bluetooth or use a PC or Mac computer to program it to complete projects.
  • LEGO Digital Designer (free, computer): download the free Lego digital designer software to build your model. Explore the extended mode with unlimited colour options and an expansive brick library.
  • Looking Glass (free, computer software, Windows, Mac, Linux): a programming environment for more advanced students. Create and share animated stories, simple games and even virtual pets. For further support, check out these FAQs.
  • Girl connecting wires
  • Minecraft Edu (paid license per student structure, Windows, Mac or Linux computer with Java installed): Minecraft contains a set of powerful yet simple tools to customise the user experience for learning. Intuitive tile-based programming. Schools need to purchase a license to use the software, based on the number of students using the program.
  • Pencil Code (free, web): a programming site for drawing art, playing music and creating games with block or text code. It has strong connections with maths including the areas of geometry, graphing and algorithms. Students can create using either block code or to extend them they can swap to text coding using Coffee script. Pre-load projects from the library or start with a blank page.
  • Scratch (free, on-line or offline editor): Scratch was developed for young people to develop their visual programming languageskills. Scratch is made up of block code which they drag to the workspace to animate sprites. It is multi-platform and web based that make it more accessible. Students can complete a range of projects including programming and sharing interactive stories, games, and animations. The Scratch website includes a range of quality resources and an education community. Access this FUSE package for resources to get started with your class. More advanced resources are available in this FUSE package.
  • Snap! (free, web): Snap is a visual, drag-and-drop programming language. It is an extended reimplementation of Scratch that allows you to Build Your Own Blocks. Teacher resources and student resources are available to support students to use Snap!.
  • Tynker (free, web or Apple app): with the option for Premium upgrade Tynker was designed to teach programming. The app features starter lesson plans, classroom management tools and online showcase of student created games and programs. Students can use the built in characters and graphics to create their own games. If using the iPad version students learn to program with puzzles and easily build their own games.
  • Stencyl (Free starter version, computer software): for advanced students who have mastered the basics of drag and drop visual coding apps. Stencyl uses the same drag and drop format but provides an open system where students can build their own games and publish them to the web (flash), to Android (Google Play Store), or to iOS (Apple Store).

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