Online course in Science, Engineering & Maths

Teaching Programming in Primary Schools

Understand key programming concepts and apply them using Scratch, with this introductory course for primary or K-5 teachers.

  • Duration 4 weeks
  • Weekly study 2 hours
  • Learn Free
  • Extra benefits From $44 Find out more

Understand key programming concepts and apply them using Scratch.

This free online course will provide a comprehensive introduction to programming, designed for non-subject-specialist primary or K-5 teachers.

Over four weeks, we’ll introduce you to key programming concepts. You’ll have the chance to apply your understanding of them through projects, both unplugged and on a computer, using Scratch as the programming language. You’ll discover common mistakes and pitfalls, and develop strategies to fix them.

What topics will you cover?

  • Introduction to programming, explore algorithms, and apply understanding in a range of hands-on, cross-curricular Scratch projects.
  • Explore repetition, and learn how to make use of repetition in your Scratch programs. Create your own art, music, making and animation using repeating patterns.
  • Discover variables through real-world examples and learn how to create variables by making a voting app, an interactive story and a ghost-catching game.
  • Explore the concept of selection by creating a ‘capital cities’ quiz and a program that classifies animals based on answers to yes/no questions.
  • Reflect on all of the key programming concepts to create your own final challenge project.

When would you like to start?

Most FutureLearn courses run multiple times. Every run of a course has a set start date but you can join it and work through it after it starts. Find out more

  • Available now
    This course started 2 Sep 2019

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Understanding of key programming concepts; algorithms, sequencing, repetition, variables and selection.
  • Scratch as a programming language.
  • Reflect on your learning and create ideas for your classroom practise.
  • Knowledge of programming concepts through projects, both unplugged and digital.
  • Cross curricular approach to programming.

Who is the course for?

Teaching Programming in Primary Schools is designed for non-subject-specialist primary or K-5 teachers. You do not need any prior experience of programming to take part.

What software or tools do you need?

Learners need access to Scratch.

What do people say about this course?

I thoroughly enjoyed this course, having previously taught Year 5 students. I was unaware of the immense activities involved in Scratch and all the exciting creations that you can have fun with. I will certainly be using this in the future. Thank you!

Caron Thornhill

I appreciate the way the course instruction was designed. The design fostered confidence because the steps we learned and practiced were clearly outlined. This aspect gave room for exploration and creativity. I look forward to practicing all the things I've learned and then share it with faculty as part of their ongoing professional development.

Dr N'Quavah R. Velazquez

Who will you learn with?

Rik Cross

Rik Cross

I am Senior Content and Curriculum Manager at the Raspberry Pi Foundation, previously a secondary ICT and Computing teacher.

Who developed the course?

The Raspberry Pi Foundation works to put the power of digital making into the hands of people all over the world, so they are capable of understanding and shaping our increasingly digital world.

National Centre for Computing Education courses

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