Today, I decided to give the hour of code a shot over on code.org. Specifically, I chose to do the hour of code with Minecraft. (When I saw I could code Minecraft, I just couldn’t resist. All of the other options just disappeared from my view.) Even though it was a short experience (much shorter than I would have liked, it was incredible. Being able to code a small project in one of my all-time favourite games was unreal. (I’ve spent hours with friends creating villages, leveling mountains, and creating giant pits of death in the middle of nowhere.) The game itself has some of my fondest video game memories, and being able to create my own project within brought back some of those awesome memories.
What I Learned
The main thing I learned from this experience is that coding is not as hard as I once thought it was. In fact, it was just like playing with lego: you put blocks in, and you create whatever you want. It is a good way to get a small introduction to what the future will likely be based around. And the code can be quite exact at times. For example, if you look at the last step of my video, everything that spawned did exactly as I instructed it to. And I have to admit, what I told it to do, wasn’t what I thought I was telling it to do. (If that makes any sense at all). I encourage you to watch the end of the video, and try and make sense of what I just said!
What I Think About Code
This little coding project was one of the most fun things I have done in a long time. It was simple, and I got to see instant results. As I went on, I had more fun adding different commands, and spawning different items. Overall, I think coding is a lot easier than I originally thought it would be, and I am sad I didn’t take the initiative to try it out sooner!
Is Coding Important in my Eyes? (Spoiler: Yes)
When I think about the road we are moving down, I feel like coding is an almost essential tool for all students to at least begin to grasp. For instance, think about grocery stores. 5 years ago or so, we started seeing self-checkouts. These self-checkouts are run automatically, but to build them, and maintain them, some knowledge of code is required. Now, it may seem like a relatively small piece of society at this point, but we are rapidly moving towards a more automated world. And the type of workers required will shift from physical labourers, to digital labourers, who work primarily in the domain of code. So yes, coding is an important skill to learn.
With all that being said, I cannot wait to use this coding website in my classroom. It was a fun and quick way to get an introduction to coding. I related well to the task, being Minecraft based, and I am sure my students will enjoy it as well. Best of all? Anyone can do it!