'Hour of Code' introduces students to pathways programs


For the second consecutive year, students from both Rhodes and Oaklawn elementary schools recently visited the Cranston Area Career and Technical Center, or CACTC, for an interactive Hour of Code experience.

The students got to visit two programs during their time at the school and tour the area before enjoying a lunch prepared by the Culinary Arts program.

According to one of the co-organizers, educator Aimee Duarte of CACTC’s Interactive Digital Media pathways program, the fourth- and fifth-grade students had the opportunity to visit the programs in pairs.

Those visiting the Interactive Digital Media program also stopped in at the Construction program, while those who observed the Graphic Communications program also visited the Aquaculture program. Students who checked out the Pre-Engineering/Robotics program also visited the Entrepreneurship program, and those who stopped in at CAD Drafting visited the CISCO Networking program as well.

At each location, students took part in hands-on activities and saw demonstrations of typical work done in that particular pathways program.

For example, students visiting the Construction program were given a demonstration of real welding using auto-darkening helmets to view the process. They then tested their skills using an augmented welder that simulates actual welding without the inherent danger. These machines are now being used extensively to train new people in the profession.

The students who visited the Graphic Communications program used Photoshop to create an object of their choice. The demonstration object was a hamburger, but the high school students took the initiative to choose their own object to teach to the fourth-graders in Photoshop using their layer palette, brush tool and color palette.

The students visiting the Interactive Digital Media program used an HTC Vive Pro to experience virtual reality. They also learned to code lights and sounds using a circuit playground, logged on to Code.org and used coding to create their own dance party.


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