Learn about computers, programming and technology through these free, fun activities.
All kinds of people can learn to use computers to solve problems and express themselves.
The world of computers keeps changing all the time. Many of the things we think are normal today were new and exciting a very short time ago. Likewise, new ideas and innovations come up all the time.
Make your Own Robot
Today we’ll learn about robots, how computers learn… and how they might learn the wrong things. When computers learn to solve problems based on examples, it’s called machine learning. And the examples we use to teach them are called training data.
Computers are listening, responding, recommending, predicting, and learning new things quickly. How do they do that? They do it with the help of artificial intelligence called CAPTCHA, a tool that learns from lots of training data.
Hiding in Plain Sight
The Internet often feels invisible, but actually it is very real! The Internet is made up of millions of computers. Data travels between computers through wires, cables, cellular towers and satellites. All over the world and in every town there are ISP boxes, wires, manhole covers and routers that help the Internet work.
The internet is made of millions of computers connected to each other around the world. You can use the internet to browse websites, communicate with people, download pictures and videos, listen to music or do lots of other amazing things. But have you ever wondered how the internet works?
Humans learn about the world through our senses. You have ears to listen and eyes to see. You can smell and taste different things, and feel if someone touches you. Robots react to their surroundings with sensors.
There are many things around us that are hidden computers. For example, new smartwatches connect to the Internet to get weather information. Many digital cameras allow you to share photos immediately over wifi. Even some fridges and cars are computers!
Input or output?
There are different ways to put information into a computer, like the keyboard or a mouse.
Computer Scavenger Hunt
List all the computers you see during the week.
The different components inside a computer, like CPU, GPU, RAM and ROM as well as Hard Drive, each have a special task. Let’s learn more about each one!
Software or Hardware?
What are computers made of? Hardware and software!
Algorithms are everywhere around us, sorting, searching, recommending and rating. Sometimes it’s hard to notice an algorithm at work.
Data can come from everywhere. Everytime you click something online, like a post or buy something from a webstore data is created. This data is then used to recommend, sort and filter different kinds of things for you. This is how computers know what kind of movies you might like or tell you need to leave for school on time.
Sort and Filter
Sorting through and searching for items are tasks we do everyday. Searching and sorting are also common tasks for a computer program, so we’ve come up with many step by step descriptions for these tasks.
Count and Graph
Algorithms need data to be able to work. Every time you like something online, give thumbs up to a video, or click on a link, the website stores it as data.
Computer science is all about information. The information computers store and send is called data.
Code is a sequence of instructions written in a language that the computer understands. Computers need instructions that are precise, in the right order, and cover everything the user might try to do with it.
We’ll practice these three things by writing a code for dancing!
Programmers put pieces of code together in an algorithm. An algorithm is a sequence of instructions or a set of rules that are followed to complete a task. This task can be anything, so long as you can give clear instructions for it.
Fill the lunchbox!
One idea that's important in computer science is abstraction, Abstraction is a complicated word, but it just means separating out details that are not needed so you can concentrate on the things that are needed.
What’s the pattern?
Pattern recognition means being able to spot certain things repeating. Recognising and re-using patterns is something we do in our everyday lives, whether it’s when we learn a new language or look at a piece of music.
What’s the order?
When we solve computer programming problems, we need to start by breaking them down into smaller problems. This is called decomposition.
What do Computer Scientists think about?
The people who study computers are called computer scientists, coders or programmers. They solve problems with computers and develop different ways to use technology. Computer scientists are needed everywhere.
Me and The Computer
Computers are pretty amazing. You can find almost anything online, or talk with a friend on the opposite side of the world, or make music, drawings, games and stories, or program an application. Can you think of anything else?
Tools of the Trade
Computers are all around us. They help us in everyday tasks. Children use computers for entertainment, looking up information and staying in touch with one another. People in shops, factories, hospitals and schools use lots of different kinds of computers in lots of different ways.
Fill in three things you’ve wondered about code, computers or technology. Start with I wonder.
3D Paper Computer
A foldable computer you can color and design!
We share a lot about ourselves on the Internet. Websites find out your preferences and habits as you use their services.
Masterbuilders of the Web
Websites are built with different programming languages. There are hundreds of them, all built for different purposes.
Ruby’s tips for safe Internet surfing
Ruby loves learning new things, going to exciting places and doing fun stuff on the Internet. But not everything is true in the World Wide Web. Sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between real-life headlines and made-up ones.
With the help of decoder you can make your own code key and write secret messages!
Download the postcards to make a geeky holiday greeting, or build your own RAM, ROM & CPU tree with the patterns.
Ruby in Scratch
Scratch is a wonderful programming playground and now you can use sprites from Hello Ruby with your creations!
Start Your Own Video Channel
Plan & play your own video channel - and learn how algorithms work while at it!
Timetable for a new school year
Computing, coding, ICT-skills, e-skills.. Who cares when you can use a computer as a tool of self-expression and problem solving!
What does the Internet look like?
No one really knows what the Internet looks like. According to technical drawings it’s a cloud, an explosion, a star or a weird lump.
You'll need to draw what you can see. Draw what you think are the steps that take place inside the Internet to move all the data. In essence, design the Internet.
Emojis are images like faces, weather, food, animals and activities we use in text messages, emails and online. Emojis are a way to share our feelings like show humor or affection in our messages. Emojis have turned into a creative language of their own.
Art & algorithms
What do art and algorithms have in common? How fast is a computer? And what are humans good at?
Design your own Operating System
Different operating systems share a lot of things. Now it’s your turn to build an operating system for a phone.
Spot a computer! List all the computers you see during the week.
(Computer) memory game
The computer needs memory to work as well as many other components. With this memory game you'll get to know the different components of a computer. You'll also get to test and develop your own memory.
Make a keyboard
In the final exercise you’ll build your own computer keyboard. You’ll also learn about alphabets, numbers, and symbols.
What's inside a computer?
Have you ever peeked inside a computer? In this exercise you'll get to draw and discuss what computers hide inside them.
Design your own game!
Design your own game! Print out the blank game board and come up with your own rules.
Can you help Ruby decorate the easter eggs with the instructions given by the computer? Every egg should look different.
Ruby is excited. She has just organised her wardrobe. Now you can help dress Ruby up in her favourite clothes. Ruby has a special dress code for each day. Can you help Ruby pick up the right outfits? Remember, there are many right answers.
Who am I?
Now you’ve met all of Ruby’s friends. Can you remember all of them? Open the file on left hands side and find them from the picture.
Universal Remote Control
In the future more and more things will be programmable. Imagine if everything had a computer inside and you'd have the universal remote. This is an exercise where you'll get to practice building a remote and giving commands.
What is a computer?
Computers are everywhere. You probably have over a hundred computers at home. No kidding! They are hidden in everything from cellphones to cars to coffee machines. Can you count how many computers you’ve seen today?
My First Computer
My First Computer is an introduction to the amazing and complicated machine that is the computer. Few things are as exciting as computers. And now you’ll get to design your very own one.
Want to join the adventure?