Code.org Hour of Code Dec. 5-11: Stratford School’s 8th Graders to Mentor Preschoolers In Virtual Classroom Storytelling/Coding Project

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LOS ANGELES & SAN JOSE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–At Stratford School’s Melrose campus, preschool students in Mr.
Silverman’s class are discovering that teamwork, creativity and
classroom fun are important components of early childhood learning.
Meanwhile, at Stratford’s San Jose Middle School, 8th graders
in Mrs. Dastur’s computer science class are preparing to help the
preschoolers create an original story they can watch on their iPads.


These two classes will come together December 9 from 1:30 to 2:30 PT
in a virtual classroom collaboration, to write and animate a
story using the computer coding skills they’re learning as part of
Stratford’s unique and balanced STEAM curriculum (Science, Technology,
Engineering, Arts and Mathematics).

This combination of creativity and tech education is all part of
Stratford School’s 2016 participation in Code.org’s
global Hour of Code event December 5-11. This is just one of many
activities across Stratford’s 22 campuses where nearly 6,000 students
are participating in a variety of creative and fun learning activities
designed to build student confidence, persistence, collaboration and
creative problem solving skills. Stratford School was among the first
private schools to champion Code.org’s Hour of Code initiative launched
four years ago.

“At Stratford, we believe it’s important that our students go beyond
just being consumers of technology to becoming creators of the
technology tools they use every day,” said Monisha Gupta, Senior
Director of Curriculum and Instruction at Stratford School. “As part of
our balanced curriculum infused with fine arts and foreign language,
we’re teaching our students programming skills starting at age three
with tools like Bee-Bots and Dash and Dot robots, and eventually moving
them to advanced coding languages. Early on, they’re actually learning
how computer code is created. Whether or not they pursue careers in
technology, engineering or coding, they learn to logically organize and
analyze real life problems to create better solutions.” Gupta adds, “Our
students are building greater confidence when dealing with complexity,
are better able to deal with open ended problems and can communicate and
work more effectively with their peers to achieve a common goal.”

Research shows that learning to code is an essential skill for all
students in the 21st century. “Stratford teaches their
youngest students how to use technology, so they can begin to understand
the possibilities of computers and tablets, going beyond drag-and-drop
and swipe-and-scroll,” said Carrie Lynne Draper, Executive Director and
STEM Expert at Readiness Learning Associates, which provides consulting
services, professional development and educator training around science,
technology, engineering and math for schools across the nation. “At
Stratford, Hour of Code is more than teaching students how to
code. It is a time for all students to experience the tremendous
power of technology. Beginning in preschool, its approach enhances
children’s cognitive and social abilities. Students have multiple
opportunities to share their discoveries while acquiring knowledge and
may occasionally mentor a particularly curious preschooler. Not every
child is going to grow up to be a computer scientist. However, for a
student desiring the opportunity to some day create technologies not yet
imagined, this is the school that will feed their imagination,”
concludes Draper.

Educators at Stratford School, across the country, and around the globe,
agree that digital literacy is paramount. Like learning a language,
teaching the foundation of coding in early childhood education fosters
the computational and algorithmic thinking skills children will need for
jobs in the 21st century. At Stratford School, this begins in
preschool.

ABOUT STRATFORD SCHOOL: Established in 1999, Stratford School is
a leading independent private school founded on the belief that
education is a significant influence in the life of a child. Stratford
offers an accelerated curriculum from preschool through eighth grade
with an emphasis in the areas of STEAM (Science, Technology,
Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) that incorporates music, physical
education, foreign language, and social skills development. Stratford’s
goal is to prepare and mentor students for admission to competitive high
schools and colleges. All students are provided the necessary tools to
excel, and are encouraged to participate actively in leadership,
community service, and extracurricular activities. Visit www.stratfordschool.com
for more information.

Contacts

For Stratford School
Kathleen Hennessy, 952-224-2939 ext. 20
khennessy@axiomcom.com
or
Stacy
Einck, 952-224-2939 ext. 13
seinck@axiomcom.com