THE COMPUTATIONAL LESSON PLAN AS A TOOL TO MAKE LEARNING MORE EFFECTIVE

It’s widely understood that both regular lessons and extracurricular activities serve a purpose – imparting knowledge, skills, and attitudes. This idea is so well-accepted that we might even call it a truism.
In today’s world, life experiences highlight the importance of human computational skills over computer skills when it comes to success in critical situations. Success involves facing challenges and treating them as opportunities to find solutions. Being able to plan a step-by-step sequence for the success of any proposed solution is consistently necessary.
Pedagogical design is a fusion of algorithmic principles and creativity. The instructional design algorithm, rooted in the teachings of Jan Amos Comenius, has evolved over time to align with various pedagogical ideals shaped by changing needs.
In our current era, the digital world has become an integral part of our lives, influencing not only our leisure time but also our experiences in schools and workplaces. Schools, now considered both workplaces and learning environments, face the challenge of adapting to this predominantly digital landscape. The question arises: How can we navigate these new digital contexts? The answer lies in the development of tools that support our fundamental purpose as a school, aiding us in achieving our educational goals in the digital age.
We advocate for the adoption of computational pedagogical worksheets as a necessary replacement for the traditional project structure. The goal is to shift the focus of lessons towards greater efficiency by eliminating activities that do not contribute to the development of computational skills. We believe that all learning activities, including those fostering creative development, inherently require computational skills. Even activities like brainstorming demand computational skills, as the leader must apply a coherent and efficient algorithm.
Implementing worksheets within a computational model necessitates acquiring new skills and a different perspective for teachers. Teachers, in turn, must guide students in developing computational skills. Many associate computational learning solely with using or realizing computer products. However, we argue that this approach merely confines users rather than truly imparting computational skills.
The Erasmus+ project “Skills to Catch the Future” emerged as a necessity for progress, taking into consideration the achievements of other teachers in previous projects. We were familiar with the outcomes of the Erasmus+ 2018-1-TR01-KA203-058832 project at the preschool level, where a “Manual of Teaching Materials” was developed, along with an instructional manual titled “Computational Thinking and Introduction to Coding Systems for Future Teachers in Primary and Preschool Education.” Given these accomplishments, we initially felt that another manual was unnecessary. However, implementing a computational approach at the primary and secondary levels posed challenges.

The pedagogical worksheet structure presented in the mentioned resources seemed simple, useful, and appropriate. Nonetheless, we required mentorship and practical expertise, which were provided in the project with the support of our Greek partner, OpenUp. Even the pedagogical sheet was enhanced through collaboration. The “Skills to Catch the Future” project brings together four similar schools that have recognized the need for learning and the opportunity to create a library of pedagogical resources for computational thinking development. These resources serve as a know-how for other teachers, regardless of the country they teach in.
Each partner in the project referred to the National Curriculum, so that the pedagogical scenario based on the computational model could be applied as much as possible to different subjects of study and age groups (6-8 years, 8-10 years, 10-12 years, 12-14 years).
Engaged teachers are actively testing these pedagogical worksheets in practice, project-based activities throughout dedicated implementation periods centered around themes such as “Back into the Future,” “Skills for the Future,” “Eco-Generation,” and “Real-life Computing.”
Throughout each lesson (learning activity), students acquire computational skills: creating a story in Scratch, locating an object using a map, reconstructing a celestial body, associating the symbolism of Brâncuși’s works with the Brâncuși axis, learning any traditional dance following a rhythmic pattern, learning any song by ear, transferring a seen (photographed) pattern through sewing, and other life skills. The project library will provide examples for these skills.