Programming without a computer: a new interface for children under eight

Wyeth, P. and Purchase, H.C. (2000) Programming without a computer: a new interface for children under eight. In: Thomas, B. and Warren, J.C. (eds.) First Australasian User Interface Conference (AUIC 2000): Proceedings, 31 January - 3 February 2000, Canberra, Australia. IEEE: Los Alamitos, USA, pp. 141-148. ISBN 9780769505152

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Electronic Blocks is a new programming interface, designed for children aged between three and eight years. The Electronic Blocks programming environment includes sensor blocks, action blocks and logic blocks. By connecting these blocks, children can program structures that interact with the environment. The Electronic Blocks programming interface design is based on principles of developmentally appropriate practices in early childhood education. As a result, the blocks provide young children with a programming environment that allows them to explore quite complex programming principles. The simple syntax of the blocks provides opportunities for young children that are unavailable through the use of traditional programming languages. The blocks allow children to create and use simple code structures. The Electronic Blocks environment provides a developmentally appropriate environment for planning overall strategies for solving a problem, breaking a strategy down into manageable units, and systematically determining the weakness of the solution. The Electronic Blocks interface is the physical embodiment of computer programming. The blocks have the unique dynamic and programmable properties of a computer, without its complexity.

Item Type:Book Sections
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Purchase, Dr Helen
Authors: Wyeth, P., and Purchase, H.C.
Subjects:Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Computing Science

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