Unit 3 Lesson 9: Online PD Discussion


Use this space to discuss the challenge activity for online pd. If you completed this lesson as part of your PD, be sure to share the following:

  • The programming artifact you created in doing the lesson (specific level is specified in code studio).
  • The assessment question or extending learning activity that you produce for this lesson.
  • Notes for others who are going to teach this lesson. This should include:
    • Advice for someone who is going to teach this lesson (consider what was challenging about doing the activity, what you think students will struggle with, etc).
    • What ideas do you have about how to structure and teach this lesson? what modifications do you plan to make to the lesson?
    • What additional resources (if any) might be helpful in teaching this lesson


In the artifact that David Selby and I collaboratively worked on, we changed the background color, modified the starfish, and oriented the fish so that they point in the opposite direction (to the right). We also modified the penWidth() in drawFish() but we don’t like how it made the tail in the screenshot, so we changed it back.

Currently, all fish are looking to the left. Which part of the code would be best to change in order to make the fish point to the right?
A) Change the moveTo() parameters in the drawAllFish() function
B) Change the drawFish() parameters in the drawAllFish() function
C) Change the turnTo() parameter in the drawFish() function
D) Change the penWidth() parameter in the drawFish() function
E) All of the above

This lesson will be challenging if you’re brand new to coding. The students may have questions about the code syntax that you do not know how to answer. It’s best to stay in block mode if this is the case. There was one point where I had to switch to text in order to modify the function call and add a parameter. That produced an error of an additional parenthesis that I believe was auto-inserted. Once that was fixed I didn’t have any other issues. Perhaps there is a way to modify the parameter list in block mode but I just switched to text.

Ask a student to explain to you how they did it. They love teaching the teachers how to do something especially when we genuinely don’t know how.

Allow students to have at least partner to work with side-by-side. But, still have them BOTH complete the tasks on their computer.



Artifact: https://studio.code.org/projects/applab/3DIJ3nSoNatrGuj4EkOlwA

Assessment: Add another shape to the drawing - different kind of fish, etc.

Notes: let the students use their creativity to come up with their own ideas.


Here is the artifact I created in Stage 7 Part 11:

Extended Learning Activity
As a preview of what’s to come later in Unit 3, I would guide students in creating a “thinking map” of an abstraction in the ocean scene. This can be a flowmap similar to those that they will see later in the unit. This is a very visual way of reinforcing the concept of abstraction. Because it’s a flow map, it will not show all the internal details of the function, only the input and output arrows. Once you start one with the class, you can ask them to identify a different abstraction in the program and create a flow map for it.

Additional Notes
Several students struggled with how to make their fish appear “normal” after making the size a parameter. Guiding questions prepared ahead of time might make it easier to help students without leading them to the answer to quickly.


Thanks for the assessment question. I agree with you about having them BOTH complete the tasks but to work as partners. I require that when I walk around they must be on the same level as their partner. No leaving partners behind!


Here is my artifact.

Challenge: Have the fish face in random directions
My students were forgetting to set the pen width to size in drawFish method which made the fish look wierd


This is my artifact: https://studio.code.org/projects/applab/L_K8ncuuH6Q5Y-EiH-uJhA

I would have the student take a piece of the code and explain the planning process in writing. I also will have them do this using pair programming.