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I heart micro:bit

By Jen Perry 60 minutes
Grades 4-6
English Language Arts,
Science and Technology,
  • Programming
  • Computing and Networks
  • Data
  • Technology and Society
Tools & Languages

Key Coding Concepts

  • Algorithms
  • Debugging
  • Loops



A step-by-step set of operations to be performed to help solve a problem



Running the same sequence multiple times



Finding problems in code and solving them

This is an introductory lesson to micro:bit. Learners will learn the parts, functions, and capabilities of micro:bit. They will also complete a beginner’s micro:bit challenge. In this challenge, learners will understand that data can transfer between micro:bits using “packets” of data. Also, learners will create a forever loop to send a packet of data.


  • micro:bit (1 per learner)
  • Computers or a device capable of pairing to micro:bit (1 per learner)

Before the lesson...

  • Review key coding concepts and ensure you are confident describing them to your group
  • Build the lesson’s main project, ensuring you are comfortable with all steps


If this is learners’ first experience with micro:bit, watch the following videos as a group:

Discuss projects that other learners have created (a web search of micro:bit will show many amazing projects!)


Open the MakeCode Editor and click ‘New Project’. Point out the main features: simulator, block categories, blocks, and block area. Review how to move, connect, and delete blocks.

Ask learners to open up the MakeCode Editor on their own computers. Have learners click on the ‘Flashing Heart’ tutorial. Walkthrough the tutorial with learners or ask them to complete it on their own.

Before you begin, be sure to explain and demonstrate that:

  • tutorial steps are written out at the top of the editor
  • by clicking ‘Next’, you can see the next step to continue building the algorithm
  • the micro:bit icon gives you the solution for the code to build when you click on it. Challenge the learners to only use this if they are stuck!

Be sure to explain coding concepts as you go through the tutorial!

Work Session

Provide learners with time to create a ‘New Project’ with their own animations. Check out this starter project (Writing Your Name) for tips.


Have learners Think-Pair-Share the following questions:

What are/is:

  • 3 new things that you learned today
  • 2 areas that challenged you in this lesson
  • 1 way you can use something from this lesson in your own life

Learning Outcomes

I can create algorithms using the MakeCode editor
I can use loops to make things happen more than once

Assessment Ideas

Formatively assess learners to determine if they are able to use the main features of the MakeCode editor.

Coding: Send a written message to a second micro:bit by completing the micro:bit ‘Micro Chat’ tutorial.

Tech & Society (Safe Communication): Identify how computers have positively and negatively impacted how people communicate with each other. See English Extension below.

English: Journal Writing prompt: How does it feel to receive a positive message from someone? How can tech send positive messages to people? Learners can explore real-life examples such as a fitness tracker device congratulating you on a reaching goal or a video game celebrating your accomplishments. Learners could then write positive messages to each other.

Math: Using a loop function, challenge learners to create a pattern of animations. Also, view BBC microbit Simple maths game and/or micro:bit calculator (Hay Kel). In a class discussion, learners can brainstorm math games that could be developed on a micro:bit.

Data (Organizing Data): Review the following Microsoft MakeCode tutorials to see how you can use the micro:bit to collect and organize data: &

*Note: This is an advanced lesson, but would be a great class demonstration and discussion about how micro:bit can collect data.

MakeCode Reference Guide

The Official BBC micro:bit User Guide (2018) by Garteth Halfacree

Introducing the BBC micro:bit - BBC Make It Digital

micro:bit Tutorial Series Part 1: Getting Started

micro:bit by BBC - Creative Classroom Tips for Educators

Starter project (writing your name) for tips by Tech Grandma Deb:

BBC microbit Simple maths game

micro:bit calculator (Hay Kel)

Micro Chat Tutorial

Tutorial: Using micro:bit and Make Code with Data Streamer

Science Experiments 01 Data Collection - Microsoft MakeCode

Teach lessons that are tied to your existing curriculum!


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    The K-12 Computer Science Framework

    Although learning how to build digital projects is a key part of Computer Science education, students should also learn a wider set of skills and competencies that will help them to harness the power of digital technologies as both creators and consumers. A comprehensive approach to K-12 Computer Science education includes learning about the following five focus areas:

    View Framework ➝


    By the end of high school, students should be able to create a simple computer program.

    Computing and Networks

    By the end of high school, students should understand and be able to use the tools and devices commonly used to build digital projects.


    By the end of high school, students should be able to explain how we use computers to create, store, organize, and analyze data.

    Technology and Society

    By the end of high school, students should be able to explore the ways in which technology and society have mutually shaped each other.


    By the end of high school, students should be able to apply design principles to the digital projects they create.