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In a coding immersion program for second graders at Lowell Elementary School in Sioux Falls, children are grasping advanced math concepts while learning to code.

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While the children in Kelsey Cosand’s Lowell Elementary School room sit cross-legged in front of a smart board, they are saying phrases with words like “negative numbers” and “debugging”, and they point out the “y” axis. This isn’t math class;  it’s coding.

In a new computer science immersion program even the younger students are learning to cofe. All students spend 30 minutes a day dragging  code blocks in different arrangements inside a program called Scratch. The different blocks manipulate a two dimensional image on the screen.

“I don’t think they intentionally realize it has to do with math, though, so that makes it more fun and engaging for them,” Cosand said.

Now in their second week of the immersion program, in partnership with the California company Code to the Future, students see the possibilities that coding opens up to them.

7 year old Rose Wickham says that coding is “challenging.” Why does she like a challenge?  “Because it makes you smarter,” she replied.

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