Unit Overview

Students use their understanding of how computers can help humans communicate to design an educational game. Pairs well with Engineering Essentials: Designing Solar Ovens.

  • Grade 4
  • Setting: In school
  • Computer Science focus: Impacts of Computing
  • Technology: Scratch
  • 5 lessons (8 class sessions)
  • Optional Math Extension: Multiplying Fractions

Standards alignment

We’ve developed each Computer Science Essentials unit with careful attention to educational standards in computer science, technology and engineering. View Standards Alignments.

Unit Map

Students explore foundational concepts related to solving problems with computers. (50–60 min.)
The class reads a story in which Lerato designs a computer game to help her neighbors recognize the positive environmental impact of choosing to cook with solar ovens. Students also explore writing an algorithm to move a character around a gameboard. (55–80 min., 2 sessions)
Students investigate how to use the website Scratch as a tool for creating computer games. (90–120 min., 2 sessions)
Students work together to create a game to teach players about energy tradeoffs. (50–65 min.)
Students follow the steps of the Engineering Design Process to imagine, plan, create, and improve a computer game that builds players’ understanding of an environmental issue. (90–120 min., 2 sessions)
Students extend their computational thinking skills to mathematical concepts as they practice strategies for multiplying fractions. (50–70 min.)

What's Included?

  • Teacher Guide (PDF)
  • Illustrated Storybook (PDF)
  • Print Materials (PDF)
  • Teacher Slides (Google Slides and PDFs)
  • Additional Resources