How to Bring STEM To Your English Lesson

Bring coding to your literacy centers at school, adding STEM to your English lesson in a fun hands-on way using fairy tales.

With a crowded curriculum no matter where in the world you teach, we're always looking for smart ways to integrate different learning areas to improve student outcomes.

Using fairy tales in the Early Years is one of my favourite ways to teach many aspects of literacy and they overlap beautifully into other areas of the curriculum like Maths, Art, Design and Technology too.

Recently in class, we've been using the text 'The Gingerbread Man' which is a perfect fit for sequencing and writing recounts and also lends itself well to introducing coding in the Early Years.
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How to bring STEM to your English Lesson in the Early Years - introduce coding in kindergarten during play. FREE printable coding cards to download | you clever monkey
Some might argue that coding is the new literacy. I've used Beebots and coding apps on the iPad like Kodable and Scratch Jnr before with great success in the classroom.

Coding in schools has become a hot topic and one I'm certainly excited about integrating into the Early Years at school.

Learning to code used to be seen as something only few people could do but now it's become far easier and more accessible to our children. Coding can now be used as a tool for learning but rather than just wheeling in the iPads, I wanted to bring elements of coding to our play!

How to bring STEM to your English Lesson in the Early Years - introduce coding in kindergarten during play. FREE printable coding cards to download | you clever monkey

Literacy centres have always been a regular feature in my classroom and offer an easy way to create invitations for play for small groups of 4-6 children.

They're perfect for recreating and retelling stories shared in class that the children are familiar with, helping to build vocabulary and language as well as social skills between the children.



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We've just finished using the text 'The Gigantic Turnip' and have begun reading 'The Gingerbread Man' which allows for easy text-to-text comparisons and is perfect for starting to look at text structure and writing recounts. After seeing some of the coding invitations created by educator Deanna McLennan, I wanted to bring some hands-on coding to our English lessons too.

'The Gingerbread Man' allowed us to tie our focus on parts of a text - characters and setting together with beginning to code. 

The children had to help the gingerbread man get safely to the river, past all the characters from the story who wanted to eat him.

How to bring STEM to your English Lesson in the Early Years - introduce coding in kindergarten during play. FREE printable coding cards to download | you clever monkey

I created a new set of story stones using images available from Twinkl and added them to our homemade grid.

I also added a coding box to the literacy center. You can grab you own copy of our cards for FREE from the link at the bottom of this post.

How to bring STEM to your English Lesson in the Early Years - introduce coding in kindergarten during play. FREE printable coding cards to download | you clever monkey




The children worked together to position the characters first across the grid then used the different arrows to find a safe path for the gingerbread man to follow to the river.

And the best part, it is all moveable so the board can be reset over and over even by the same group of children.


How to bring STEM to your English Lesson in the Early Years - introduce coding in kindergarten during play. FREE printable coding cards to download | you clever monkey

You can grab your FREE copy of our coding cards here.


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How to bring STEM to your English Lesson in the Early Years - introduce coding in kindergarten during play. FREE printable coding cards to download | you clever monkey


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