Computational Thinking with Year 6

Year 6 have been working on their computational thinking skills. But what is Computational Thinking?

Computational thinking is not thinking about computers or like computers. Computers don’t think for themselves. Not yet, at least! Computers are incredible devices, they extend what we can do with our brains. With them, we can do things faster, keep track of vast amounts of information and share our ideas with other people.

Computational thinking is about looking at a problem in a way that a computer can help us to solve it. The children starting by developing an algorithm, a step-by-step sequence of instructions. The problem that I gave to the children was to make a jam sandwich. Easy I hear you say, but not if you are not sure how much butter or jam to spread on the bread. That’s once you work out where the bread is and how to take it out of the bag, or even what is bread. As you can imagine lots of back tracking once we started to follow the instructions and try to make the Jam sandwich. After repeated attempts the children successfully made a Jam sandwich and yes they did get to eat the sandwich.   

The children have now moved onto Minefield this is a game where your blindfolded partner needs to get from one side of the sports hall to the other side without them stepping on the mouse traps. The children had lots of fun developing an algorithm to gain the most points without getting caught on a mouse trap.