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Computer science family fun


  • CalendarAvailable on request
  • Clock outlineFlexible
  • Available in Welsh

Our family fun activities aim to make learning computer science principles fun, engaging and interactive.

These resources can be used both at home and in school. They cover a range of computer science topics and are all unplugged – this means no computer is required!

On this page you will find 14 different activities:

  • Abstraction: Speedy sketch (foundation phase and key stage two)
  • Decomposition: Dance challenge (key stage two and key stage three
  • Abstraction and decomposition: Guess who game (key stage two and key stage three)
  • Algorithms: Chicken and egg hunt (key stage two)
  • Algorithms: Crazy characters (key stage two)
  • Barcode checksum challenge (key stage two and key stage three)
  • Binary egg hunt challenge (foundation phase and key stage two)
  • Binary: Bracelets (foundation phase and key stage two)
  • Binary: Name tags (foundation phase and key stage two)
  • Cryptography: Code name challenge (key stage two and key stage three)
  • Cryptography: Treasure chest challenge (key stage two and key stage three)
  • Pixel art challenge (foundation phase and key stage two)
  • Pixel hex art challenge (key stage two)
  • Conditional statements: Robot board game (key stage two)

The School of Computer Science and Informatics at Cardiff University is a Technocamps hub. These resources have been created in partnership with Technocamps. Technocamps’ mission is to inspire, motivate and engage people with computational thinking and promote Computer Science as underpinning all aspects of modern society. You can find more activities on the Technocamps website.

Abstraction: Speedy sketch

This activity helps us understand the concept of abstraction.  Abstraction is the process of removing any unnecessary detail and only focusing on the overview or key elements. It is an important part of computer science, because it means computers need less memory and makes processes much faster, making it more efficient.

The activity is for:

  • foundation phase
  • key stage two

Download the speedy sketch activity pack, PDF

Decomposition: Dance challenge

In this physical dance activity, the concept of decomposition will be introduced. This is the process of breaking large complex problems into smaller, manageable parts. This is important to computers as it allows the brain of the computer (CPU) to function better.

The activity is for:

  • key stage two
  • key stage three

Download the decomposition dance challenge activity pack, PDF

Abstraction and decomposition: Guess who game

This Guess Who activity builds on the concepts of abstraction (Speedy sketch) and decomposition (Dance challenge). Computers require abstraction and decomposition in order to function efficiently.

The activity is for:

  • key stage two
  • key stage three

Download the abstraction and decomposition guess who game, PDF

Algorithms: Chicken and egg hunt

Computers need algorithms to work. This game helps us practice using algorithms in a way that lets us see the instructions working. This activity will also introduce the concept of debugging. Debugging is used to fix mistakes and improve computer programs.

The activity is for:

  • key stage two

Download the chicken and egg hunt activity pack, PDF

Algorithms: Crazy characters

This activity helps us understand algorithms and why they are important.  Algorithms are sets of instructions used to complete a task – for a computer to understand and work properly, the instructions must be very clear and precise. Computers love clear algorithms!

The activity is for:

  • key stage two

Download the crazy characters activity pack, PDF

Barcode checksum challenge

Barcodes are everywhere around us on the items we buy at the shops. The barcodes help organize and index information, or prices, for different objects. This activity will explore the world of barcodes and help us understand what the digits mean.

The activity is for:

  • key stage two
  • key stage three

Downloads:

Binary egg hunt challenge

This activity helps us understand binary and why it is important. Computers work in binary which uses only two digits, 0 and 1. Computers store data using these zeros or ones. This helps a computer to understand information and instructions.

The activity is for:

  • foundation phase
  • key stage two

Download the binary egg hunt challenge activity pack, PDF

Binary: Bracelets

This activity introduces binary to children. To create binary bracelets, children will use the two binary digits,1 and 0, and begin to develop an understanding of why binary is important to computers.

The activity is for:

  • foundation phase
  • key stage two

Download the binary bracelets activity pack, PDF

Binary: Name tags

Another activity to introduce binary to children. To create binary name tags, children will use the two binary digits, 1 and 0. Through the activity children will begin to understand why binary is important to computers.

The activity is for:

  • foundation phase
  • key stage two

Download the binary name tags activity pack, PDF

Cryptography: Code name challenge

In this activity, we will explore the world of secret messages. Cryptography is the writing of secret messages using codes and keys, and then working out the secret message using the secret code or key. Making the message secure using a code is called encryption. Working out the message or decoding is called decryption.

The activity is for:

  • key stage two
  • key stage three

Download the code name challenge activity pack, PDF

Cryptography: Treasure chest challenge

In this activity, we will explore the world of secret messages by creating a lockable treasure chest. Cryptography is the writing of secret messages using codes and keys, and then working out the secret message using the secret code or key.

The activity is for:

  • key stage two
  • key stage three

Download the cryptography treasure chest challenge activity pack, PDF

Pixel art challenge

This colouring activity will demonstrate how pixels are used to create images. You can find pixels all around you at home in T.V screens, computer screens, ipads, smartphones and cameras! A pixel is the smallest element in a whole image. Computer screens display thousands of pixels, and these are put together to create pictures. They are made up of three main colours: red, green and blue.

The activity is for:

  • foundation years
  • key stage two

Download the pixel art challenge activity pack, PDF

Pixel hex art challenge

This pixel art challenge will introduce Hexadecimal values. These are important because hex values are used to define different colours, including shades and hues. Each colour is made from a mix of red, green and blue.

The activity is for:

  • key stage two

Download the pixel hex art challenge activity pack, PDF

Conditional statements: Robot board game

In this activity we explore how computers follow rules by using conditional statements. Create your own conditional statements and programme your robot to play the board game.

The activity is for:

  • key stage two

Download the robot board game activity pack, PDF

Find out more

For more information about the activity, please visit our website.


About the organiser

This activity is organised by School of Computer Science and Informatics. Contact us at mcnamee-brittainc@cardiff.ac.uk for more details.

How to book

If you have any questions, please get in touch:

Emailmcnamee-brittainc@cardiff.ac.uk


No booking required.

TicketThis activity is free

Audience

  • TickFoundation - ages 3-7, foundation year and years 1 and 2
  • TickKey stage two - ages 7-11, years 3-6

Curriculum themes

  • TickMathematics and numeracy
  • TickScience and technology
  • TickDigital competency

Activity type

  • TickActivity
  • TickOnline resource

Purpose

  • TickExtracurricular or independent learning
  • TickSupporting curriculum themes
  • TickWidening university participation

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Partners

  • Technocamps