SPORTS & PLAY & ALGORITHMIC THINKING
Scharf (2007) designated and conducted a play with robotic kits called Tangicons in a preschool and a primary school and the research activity results showed that the preschool children were very fast learners who can recognise the connection between the Tangicons (blocks used for programming) and LEDs (Light bulbs in different colours). Research findings revealed that the children had some difficulties in remembering the sequences at first and they needed to check the sequences at every step, but they learned very fast and started to follow the sequences without looking up. The activity was planned, taking into account the children’s attention span and their need to move around at intervals, and running and game activities requiring both fine and gross motor skills were placed into the play. Participating children mostly (7 out of 8 in the preschool) told that they liked the play very much.
Strnad (2018), carried out play activities with preschool children to facilitate them to perceive how robots work and comprehend how algorithms are formed. Blindfolded children received the commands and took steps forward, backward, turned right and left and reached the predetermined destinations by complying with the commands. They established a connection with the functioning of the robots in this way. During the activities, children used Lego toys to construct their animal robots. In this way, they also revised the names of the animals and worked on their shapes. This also helped children reinforce their knowledge of natural science. During the activity, a story was also created for children to keep their attention alive. It was observed that children were very engaged and eager to play more. This also shows that a learning scenario for the improvement of algorithmic thinking skills can be designated in a way that includes more than one or two learning areas.