Learning to write essays through code

Teacher feature time! Melissa-Ann Pero, a superstar English teacher in Pennsylvania, is using coding to teach revision in English class! Mrs. Pero, who helps students who have trouble in other parts of school, uses coding lessons to teach coding and revision at the same time.

She approaches revision practices much like she would coding. Both require repetition: “It’s forced repetition - if it doesn’t work, [students] have to go back and try again. That’s how it works, when they come to me I say we have to go through it together.”

Also like programming, if an English paper doesn’t contain the correct syntax (i.e. complete sentences, paragraphs, etc.), it creates an error. Mrs. Pero draws a comparison between a successful paper and a functioning computer program: “the computer won't check the code logic until the syntax is [correct].” Likewise, multiple revision attempts (“debugging”) might be necessary before a paper can communicate the student’s ideas clearly.

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