This page provides information to support educators and families in teaching K-3 students about booleans. It is designed to complement the Booleans topic on BrainPOP Jr.

Learning to code and understanding the role of booleans develops children’s engineering, computer and problem-solving skills, while empowering them to be creative and to persevere. It’s also fun!  

Review with students that a boolean is a kind of data that tells a computer what to do by giving two possible values — true or false. They can think of a boolean as an answer to a yes/no question. There are many ways to model a boolean for students, such ask asking a true/false question. For example, repeatedly tap your foot on the ground and ask students if you are tapping your foot. By answering yes, students are recognizing a true value. If they answer no, the value would’ve been false.

Explain that we use boolean blocks to identify the actions to code, such as “feet tapping” or “hands clapping” and then setting a value of true or false. Point out that conditionals, such as “and,” “or,” or “not” can further determine what happens in the program. For example, adding an “and” block between “feet tapping” and “hands clapping,” ensures that both actions occur simultaneously.

By applying the logic of booleans and conditionals, students begin to think like coders, demonstrating understanding of the building blocks of programming.

Coding is no longer a skill exclusive to high-tech programmers, but one that is quickly becoming integral to many industries—from medicine to transportation and more. As a result, learning to code is becoming as fundamental as reading, writing, and math. Coding is empowering for children, too,  as they learn to solve problems independently and think creatively in the process.

 

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