Historically, coding projects has been seen in isolation as purely a ‘tech’ skill, focused on logic and reasoning rather than creativity. However, this is changing as it becomes increasingly clear that technology needs to be part of every solution.
Students need creativity when coming up with solutions and designing end products. You can help your students understand and apply the creative elements of coding by giving the project a creative context or encouraging them to focus on the end product and user.
Making a project creative:
In 2018, we worked with 520 girls from local schools in Hong Kong on designing wearable technology. With a theme of creating things to enhance daily life, the girls had free reign over their designs.
They had to learn and apply coding skills and think about how they could use them creatively. As a result, we have seen light-up coats for dogs, light-up umbrellas for when it rains and gets darker, and temperature-sensitive flashing t-shirts.
By giving a more creative context for their project, students understood that coding could be used for many different things.
Focus on the end product:
At BSD, all of our coding projects finish with an end product. This isn’t just because it is fun for a student to build something, but it encourages them to think about who will use their product and why. So get your students to build an app by applying the design cycle.
As part of this, students need to prototype, get feedback and think about UI and UX. They need to be creative to build a well-designed, appealing, and functional product for the desired audience.
Have you tried coding projects that focused on the creative side of coding? We want to hear from you! Please send us your work/student’s work or project ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org!