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UP plans to Introduce Digital Literacy and Coding Programs in Upper Primary Schools

April 22, 2023

Nishant Saxena

The education department in Uttar Pradesh is considering implementing the Digital Literacy, Coding, and Computational Literacy Program (DLCC) in upper primary schools. 

The goal of the program is to give students a basic and practical understanding of coding. In a pilot program conducted in partnership with the HCL Foundation, 26 schools in Hardoi district were involved, and it was discovered that students had a good grasp of basic coding concepts. According to Alok Varma, the project director for Samuday at HCL Foundation, has been quoted as saying, “More than 81% of KGBV and 98% of Composite schools’ students completed their application-based assessment, signifying that they are able to apply their understanding of the basic concepts of coding successfully. In fact, children are now making animated movies and coding games.”

The National Education Policy (NEP) of 2020 emphasizes the importance of teaching computing alongside mathematics and science, as it promotes problem-solving, computational thinking, and critical reasoning skills. Keeping this in mind, Director General of School Education, Vijay Kiran Anand, has been quoted as saying, “We are working on a proposal, and once the model is finalized, we will try to scale up.”

Recently, a state-level workshop was conducted to build on the findings and discuss the possibilities of replication and scaling across the state. This digital initiative is aimed at strengthening rural education by introducing computers and basic coding to teach students logical thinking, decision-making, direction, as well as the basics of financial intelligence and business acumen.

Block-based programming platforms such as Scratch were used in the project to develop students’ understanding of coding concepts and provide opportunities for them to deepen their knowledge by creating projects. The emphasis of the program was on foundational learning, achieved by teaching basic concepts relevant to students’ lives. The approach aimed to improve students’ engagement and retention of knowledge. To ensure that each student could understand and retain the knowledge, basic coding concepts such as sequencing, distance and direction, algorithms, and debugging were taught using conceptual examples from their own lives.

Introducing digital literacy and coding programs in upper primary schools can have several potential benefits. It can help equip students with valuable skills, such as problem-solving, critical thinking, and logical reasoning, which are increasingly relevant in today’s digital age. Additionally, learning to code can also provide students with opportunities for creativity and innovation, and can prepare them for careers in technology and related fields. Ultimately, the success of such programs will depend on various factors such as the quality of implementation, resources, and training provided to teachers and students.

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