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Algorithms - Elementary
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Microcredential ID : 52
Algorithms & Programming - Elementary
0.5 PTSB Recertification Credit


Earners demonstrate their understanding of the use of algorithms. In addition, earners show how to effectively support students in learning about the development, combination, and decomposition of algorithms and evaluating competing algorithms. This micro-credential also asks earners to develop a plan for targeted professional development to deepen their CS content and pedagogical knowledge and skills continuously.

  • Computer Science Teachers Assocation (CSTA) Standards for CS Teachers > Professional Growth and Identity
    3a - Pursue targeted professional development. Develop and implement a plan for targeted professional development to continuously deepen their CS content and pedagogical knowledge and skills.
  • Computer Science Teachers Assocation (CSTA) Standards for CS Teachers > Instructional Design
    4a - Analyze CS curricula. Analyze CS curricula for implementation in their classrooms in terms of CS standards alignment, accuracy, completeness of content, cultural relevance, and accessibility.
  • Computer Science Teachers Assocation (CSTA) Standards for CS Teachers > Instructional Design
    4b - Develop standards-aligned learning experiences. Design and adapt learning experiences that align to comprehensive K-12 CS standards.
  • Computer Science Teachers Assocation (CSTA) Standards for CS Teachers > Instructional Design
    4g - Inform instruction through assessment. Develop multiple forms and modalities of assessment to provide feedback and support. Use resulting data for instructional decision-making and differentiation.
  • Wyoming Content and Performance Standards > Algorithms & Programming
    2.AP.A.01 - With guidance, identify and model daily processes by creating and following algorithms (sets of step-by- step instructions) to complete tasks (e.g., verbally, kinesthetically, with robot devices, or a programming language).
  • Wyoming Content and Performance Standards > Algorithms & Programming
    5.AP.A.01 - Using grade appropriate content and complexity, compare and refine multiple algorithms for the same task and determine which is the most appropriate.
How To Earn This Microcredential

To earn this micro-credential you will process through the ADDIE learning model producing evidence that demonstrates your knowledge of the Wyoming Computer Science Content and Performance Standards and the CSTA Standards for Teachers. Through the ADDIE learning model, you will analyze standards, design/develop and implement a lesson, collect student work artifacts, and evaluate your professional practices.

There will be no fee assessed for reviewing this microcredential.

This micro-credential is intended for teachers in grades K-6. If you teach middle school or high school grades, you will want to work on the secondary level computer science micro-credentials. The Algorithms micro-credential is one of five micro-credentials that make up the Algorithms & Programming stack. The Algorithms & Programming stack is one of six micro-credential stacks that will lead to a Computer Science Teacher Master Distinction when completed.

Important Terms

A step-by-step process to complete a task.


A type of application software designed to run on a mobile device, such as a smartphone or tablet computer. Also known as a mobile application.

Chosen Grade Band:

The teacher/earner can choose which grade band and standard to focus their lesson around.

Complete Knowledge:

Refers to all of the skills listed in the proficient level of the 2019 WY Computer Science Performance Standards (see in the resources) for the chosen standard.

Computational Artifact:

Anything created by a human using a computational thinking process and a computing device. A computational artifact can be, but is not limited to, a program, image, audio, video, presentation, or web page file.

Computer Science:

The study of computing principles, design, and applications (hardware & software); the creation, access, and use of information through algorithms and problem solving, and the impact of computing on society.


A feature of a programming language that performs different computations or actions depending on whether a programmer-specified Boolean condition evaluates to true or false. (A condition could refer to a conditional statement, conditional expression, or conditional construct.)


(in general) The power to direct the course of actions. (in programming) The use of elements of programming code to direct which actions take place and the order in which they take place.

Control Structures:

A programming (code) structure that implements control. Conditionals and loops are examples of control structures.


Information that is collected and used for reference or analysis. Data can be digital or non-digital and can be in many forms, including numbers, text, a show of hands, images, sounds, or video.


To break down into components.


Any identifiable occurrence that has significance for system hardware or software. User-generated events include keystrokes and mouse clicks; system-generated events include program loading and errors.

Grade Band:

The Computer Science Standards are written in grade bands (K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12) The standard committee (CSSRC) determined the standard to be met by the end of the grade band. In grades 9-12, the standards provide level 1 and level 2 standards. Level 1 standards include introductory skills. The level 2 standards are intended for students who wish to advance their study of computer science.


Refers to Computer Science standards ranging from kindergarten into postsecondary education.


A programming structure that repeats a sequence of instructions as long as a specific condition is met.

Performance Standards:

The standards all students are expected to learn and be assessed on through the district assessment system by the end-of-the grade band (see 2019 WY Computer Science Performance Standards in the resources).


An early sample, model, or release of a product built to test a concept or process or to act as a thing to be replicated or learned from.

Scope and Sequence:

Scope refers to the topics and areas of development within a curriculum, and the sequence is the order in which those skills are taught.

Supporting CS Standard:

All students are expected to be instructed on these CS standards, taught within the context of the performance standards. (see Micro-credential Map by Grade Band in the resources) If no supporting standards are listed on the map, this area is not applicable.


Tasks take place away from a computer in order to model key concepts.Variable


A symbolic name used to keep track of a value that can change while a program is running. Variables are not just used for numbers; they can also hold text, including whole sentences (strings) or logical values (true or false). A variable has a data type and is associated with data storage location; its value is normally changed during the course of program execution.

Background Scenario / How This Will Help You

This micro-credential collection provides earners with the opportunity to document their knowledge and skills in teaching computer science to students in grades K–6. The content provides resources to support understanding.

Earners are encouraged to participate in additional learning opportunities if more extensive learning is needed. Additional learning opportunities may include free online resources, postsecondary courses, and local courses.

The micro-credential structure offers earners flexible pathways and timelines. Earners can complete the micro-credentials in any order that aligns with their classroom timelines and availability. Micro-credentials offer earners the opportunity to submit evidence and receive evaluator feedback. Earners are encouraged to resubmit evidence until mastery is earned. Each resubmission will be reviewed, and updated feedback will be provided.

Evidence Options
Be sure to submit the type and number of pieces of evidence specified below.
Category: Analyze

Analyze: Standards This task requires an analysis of both computer science content standards and the CSTA Standards for Computer Science Teachers.

Analyze: Standards:

All instructions are included in the worksheet. Once you have completed the worksheet, upload it in the evidence section as a PDF. Google Docs Template: https://bit.ly/3Gr4IyX

ANALYZE – K-6 Algorithms _ Programming – Algorithms.docx

Category: Design/Develop

This lesson plan shows the planned instruction of your computer science focus standard.

Lesson Plan:

All instructions are included in the worksheet. Once you are finished with this task, upload your lesson plan in the evidence section as a PDF. Google Docs Template: https://bit.ly/3ummSzC


Category: Implement

Implement the set of activities or lesson plan you designed.

Student Work:

Submit evidence of student learning for your focus standard. Include evidence of students that have met the standard and students that have not met the standard. Examples include videos of students working, completed student worksheets, etc. Annotate each piece of evidence to demonstrate how you facilitated student achievement of the standard.


Provide evidence of students' learning and annotate what you see with examples that include students who demonstrate higher and lower levels of learning.

Category: Evaluate

Evaluate how effective your activities were at promoting student learning of the standards. Use specific examples from the artifacts you submitted in the Implement activity.


All instructions are included in the worksheet. Once you have completed the worksheet, upload it in the evidence section as a PDF. Google Docs Template: https://bit.ly/3J5Og8X

EVALUATE – Worksheet.docx


Using the questions in the Evaluate - Worksheet, reflect on the instruction and learning that occurred in the lesson you taught.

Review Criteria

Evidence submissions and reflections will be reviewed for alignment with the assignment guidelines and this proficiency scale. Proficiency scale: https://bit.ly/3roZBLq

This checklist will help you review your submission materials to ensure you address everything that is expected for this micro-credential. Checklist: https://bit.ly/32XbA9N

Reflection Prompts

Please provide a self-assessment, a score from 1–4, on each component of the proficiency scale found here: https://bit.ly/3roZBLq. Provide a few sentences stating where the pieces of evidence that support the scores for each component are located.

If you are resubmitting, please indicate what changes were made in the documents (e.g., highlight, text color) and include "Resubmission #" with the resubmission number in the file title when you upload.

Review Criteria

Content knowledge – The teacher demonstrates accurate and complete knowledge of the content and skills of the standard being taught. (CSTA 4a)

Inform instruction through assessment – The teacher develops multiple forms and modalities of assessment to provide feedback and support. The teacher uses resulting data for instructional decision-making and differentiation. (CSTA 4g)

Supporting standards The teacher identifies and explains the connection of supporting computer science standards to the standard being taught in their lesson

Vertical alignment – The teacher explains the relationship of the standard in the scope and sequence of computer science standards directly above and below chosen grade band. (CSTA 4b)

Pursue target professional development – The teacher develops and implements a plan for targeted professional development to continuously deepen their computer science content and pedagogical content knowledge and skills. (CSTA 3a)

2nd Grade CS Lessons Gilbert Public Schools

Lessons aligned to each CS Standard for grades K-2.

5th grade CS Lessons Gilbert Public Schools

Lessons aligned to each CS Standard for grades 3 -5.

Brownie Bites (unplugged)

Students practice giving precise instructions on how to cut a brownie into equal parts.

Computer Science in K-12: An A to Z Handbook on Teaching Programming - Chapter A: Algorithms (Paid Resource)

This is a handbook for K-12 teachers interested in teaching programming. It's designed to focus on pedagogy and be accessible to beginners and useful for teachers who are more experienced. Each chapter has tons of examples and ideas of what to look out for in terms of misconceptions.

Computer Science Professional Development Guide

This guide contains four steps for education leaders to build computer science capacity among K-12 teachers, counselors, and administrators and build a CS PD plan.

Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA)

CSTA is a great resource to join to pursue continuous CS professional development.

Fraction Number Line Exploration

Students experiment with a Scratch project to find different ways for a sprite to reach a particular point on a number line.

Graph Paper Programming

This lesson introduces basic concepts like sequencing and algorithms to the class in an unplugged activity. Students will use symbols to instruct each other to color squares on graph paper.

How to Code a Roller Coaster (Paid Resource)

This is a follow-up book to How to Code a Sandcastle. It expands the concepts a bit to include variables.

How to Code a Sandcastle (Paid Resource)

This children's book tells a story of a girl coding a robot to build a sandcastle to introduce code, sequencing, loops, and decomposition.

How to Explain Algorithms to Kids

This article by Tynker discusses how to explain algorithms to kids as well as the benefits of Algorithmic thinking.

My Robotic Friends Jr

Using a set of symbols in place of code, students will design algorithms to instruct a "robot" to stack cups in different patterns. Students will take turns participating as the robot, responding only to the algorithm defined by their peers. This segment teaches students the connection between symbols and actions, the difference between an algorithm and a program, and the valuable skill of debugging.

Polygon Partners (unplugged)

Students write instructions for drawing a shape. They trade with a partner and use the feedback to improve their instructions.

Starry Night Scratch Jr Lesson

This lesson teaches students how to code various real-life events in a simulation of a starry night. Students will use graphical programming blocks in Scratch Jr and create algorithms to tell the characters what to do.

Video: Sequencing

Music video teaching students about sequencing. Sequence programming focuses on the order of things. Learn about how a computer needs to have correct step-by-step instructions with this fun sequencing coding song and computer video!

Canvas Course - Algorithms and Programming - Elementary

This course is designed to support you in completing the Wyoming Elementary Computer Science micro-credentials in the Algorithms and Programming stack (1) Algorithms, (2) Control, (3) Modularity, (4) Program Development, and (5) Variables. The course is organized into five modules, one for each micro-credential in the stack. The course supports educators in better understanding the Computer Science Wyoming Content & Performance Standards, Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) Standards for CS Teachers, and how to complete the Analyze and Develop tasks associated with the micro-credential.

Linsay Alexander

Linsay Alexander
Sue Clarke

Sue Clarke
Jamie Fortman

Jamie Fortman
Erica Jensen

Erica Jensen
Erika Jorgensen

Erika Jorgensen
Sara Kirkpatrick

Sara Kirkpatrick
Carolyn MacFarland

Carolyn MacFarland
Andrea McGuire

Andrea McGuire
Megan Mohr

Megan Mohr
Shebree Moore

Shebree Moore
Kaylee Nygren

Kaylee Nygren
Melissa Price

Melissa Price
Courtney Pushcar

Courtney Pushcar
Melissa Rasmussen

Melissa Rasmussen
Annie Sampson

Annie Sampson
Jamy Shassetz

Jamy Shassetz

Wyoming Department of Education

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