Sunday, April 30, 2017

Creating a Chrome Extension

The MYP Design course is really interesting for me. It is my first time teaching an MYP Course, and it is really fun. The course allows schools to adapt it to the resources available.

The flexibility brings about challenges as well; there is no set curriculum.

At KAS, we try as much as possible to give students assignments that allow them authentic experiences. When they learn about gathering statistics, students are asked to use multiple types of data collection. When they create a poster or a t-shirt for a club, I want them to actually print it. And when they code, I want them to make something they will actually use.

This brings be to last year.

We were coding, and I thought it might be good for students to apply the design cycle to a Chrome Extension. In the event someone had chosen that topic, I wanted to be able to help them if they got into trouble. So I started looking into how to make one myself.





At that time I completed the tutorial I found. In the end, no one chose to make one.

However, this year, more students are interested in learning about coding and there is a student who wanted to take on the challenge I set for him. 

I learned that the URL docs.google.com/create will make a Google Doc. I wanted to have a button to do this, instead of typing it in every time. 

One way to do this is to make a Bookmark. And I tried that. But the bookmark didn't have a favicon (image) and it looked a little dull. It was functional, but I wanted to have an image and I wanted to make a Chrome Extension.

So I did.

          

I wish I could say that I understood the whole structure and was able to write it myself, but I wasn't. I was able to, however, understand enough to piece together snippets of code I found and realize what from the tutorial I did not need.


Maybe this is how coding should be taught. Maybe after having lessons in the basics, students should be given opportunities to take existing code and modify it how they see fit. 

It was exciting to see my app published where anyone can find it (after I get a few reviews, it might be listed higher). I think most of all, it was a good feeling to complete it after so many failures.

2 comments:

  1. I think it's exciting that you had a student interested in doing the coding challenge. As you've probably learned, code is highly shared. Everyone takes a piece they need and moves on. Be sure to encourage your student to keep the copyright information in the code itself - it will help the next person. Keep encouraging the students to try. Everyone should try coding at some point.

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  2. Many students are eager to learn to code -- I think they are encouraged by their parents. But we also have some wizards at the school who can do some amazing things, and I have another student who is already freelancing.

    I like the idea to keep the citation in the code.

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