'Underground Algorithms' (Lanchester EP)

14th January 2016

Great session today delivering 'Underground Algorithms' with my Year 5 pupils at Lanchester EP Primary School (Co.Durham).
Children were assigned into pairs and each person chose a card with the name of a London Underground station upon it.
The first task was for each person to find their station and to put their coloured counter upon it.
Pupils then had to plan a PRECISE route (algorithm) to get from their station to that of the partner's. 
In order to make their algorithm as precise as possible children used direction of travel (north, south, east, west), colour and name of the line traveling upon, what changes were needed and how many stops before your destination.
One pupils had composed their algorithm they then used 'Tube Map' to see if they had found the fastest route. If the app differed from their route, then they were able to trace their steps and to debug their algorithm.
Pupils were fully engaged throughout the session and the language and discussion that took place was excellent, as pupils developed their computational thinking skills.
I'll certainly be trying this lesson out again at schools around the UK and would certainly recommend to all Upper KS2 staff.