Taking a leap here. First, I’m not super good at crafts. Second, I’m pretty clueless about coding. I do know it’s computer language and a bunch of 1’s and 0’s, but that’s about it. But Technology is the T in STEM, so here we go! I’m learning along with my little guy on this one, and you can too! Also, it’s festive!
I did not make this up. Through a google search I stumbled upon a cool website which laid it all out there for me. Perfect. Don’t you love how this is out there, available, but it takes being intentional (at least for me) to add a STEM activity to our already busy Christmas season of decorating, baking, shopping, celebrating, etc.
Full disclosure, I’m completely intimidated by coding and stuff. Those places advertising teaching coding to kids seem like a brilliant idea to me since I don’t have the faintest idea where to start! This is so good for me, then, because I followed this link and learned the basics.
Of equal importance, the craft itself does not involve modeling clay, glue, glitter, paint, paper-mâché, or anything else I don’t have time for (let’s be real, it’s the mess that turns me off!).
Green beads represent 1’s; red beads represent 0’s. Eddie picked Christmas-related words: [candy]cane and [Christmas]tree, and I wrote them on a sticky note. He found each letter on the print out and strung the beads on a red pipe cleaner (the clear beads are for the spaces in between, which he claimed was when the computer was resting). This is really basic, but does the job at opening the door for a 4-year-old understanding of the technology behind computer coding, which is where I’m at too, honestly.
Added bonus: my brother-in-law is in town right now and while he’s not a rocket scientist, he is a self-trained coder, and showed us some real-life code and answered my dumb questions (Do people sit there typing in 1’s and 0’s?). His claim? “Anybody can be a computer coder! Even a grandma!”
Easy peasy. So get out there and do some coding! No excuses!