Coding Activity unplugged interactive game robot dance | distance learning

Rated 4.8 out of 5, based on 33 reviews
33 Ratings
Sandra Balisky
Grade Levels
1st - 5th
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • PDF
13 pages
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Sandra Balisky
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  1. This bundle of games and activities will help kids learn fundamental coding skills - while playing, dancing, solving mysteries, and graphing mystery pictures! These are great activities for everything from full-class dance breaks to after school computer clubs to homeschool co-ops. This bundle inclu
    Price $8.22Original Price $11.75Save $3.53


Great for use at home if you're stuck in a Coronavirus quarantine and want fun activities for your kids. This is an active, offline coding game for 3+ players (the more, the better!) that can be played in any space (the more crowded, the better!).


Players will take turns working in pairs to choreograph a {human} robot dance using the coding cards provided. For each round, the two choreographers will choose their role: the Programmer (calls out dance-steps once the code is completed) or the Bug-Finder (finds mistakes in the code or catches dancers who make mistakes). Everyone else will be Robot-Dancers. (The dancers end up looking a bit like stiff, mechanical robots.)

Cards include:

*Movement cards: Left, Right, Straight, Spin Around, and Jump

-For exposure to more advanced coding skills, the Left and Right cards include degrees on a full 360° circle.

-A repeat tile can be used to repeat a single action or a group of actions.

-All movement cards include the numbers 1-5. If cards are laminated, players can circle the number with a dry-erase pen. If cards are printed on paper, cut lines in between the numbers, fold up all the numbers, then fold down just the one needed for that round.

*If/Then cards

4 sets of if/then conditional statements are established that account for players bumping into various objects or people. Every possible situation elicits a different response; this sends people all kinds of new directions, adding a fun twist (and a bit of crazy!) to the game. Players may choose to create their own “if/then” conditional statements if they want to add even more action and unpredictability to the game. Cards are written in typical coding terms, for a more accurate representation of coding languages.

*Challenge Cards

At the beginning of each round, the Programmer has the choice to turn over a challenge card and include the directions in their code. These cards introduce further coding skills.


Play begins with 2 people (the Programmer and the Bug-Finder) who use the code cards to set up a dance pattern for the rest of the players (the Robot-Dancers). The Bug-Finder will carefully analyze the code, making sure it works the way it should.

Once the code is set up, all Robot-Dancers take their positions. They can stand anywhere in the room, facing any direction. If you’d like to go for more of a synchronized look, you can have everyone stand in a row at an arm’s length apart. (1 - 25 Robot-Dancers needed.)

The Programmer will read the code aloud, calling out the directions one at a time for the Robot-Dancers. The Bug-Finder will carefully watch the dancers and catch anyone who makes a mistake. The Bug-Finder will have to carefully watch to make sure all dancers are following the conditions of the “if/then” cards as well as the instructions from the movement cards. It can get a bit wild and crazy in a crowded room with lots of dancers!


This game can be as simple or as complex as you want to make it. Very young children who have never learned about coding can participate in the choreographed dance moves and learn several fundamental coding skills in the process. Older kids who know a few coding basics can create more complex code using the coding cards, and can practice and extend their knowledge by using the challenge cards.

If you are using this in a classroom, you may want to start by explaining the directions and demonstrate one round with the whole class, then split students into smaller groups (4-6 students). Each group can come up with their own choreograph-code and practice their dance, then the entire class can have a (friendly!) “dance-off” competition. After this initial experience (up to one hour of class time) you can continue to build on these coding skills by playing a single round whenever you have 5-15 extra minutes in class. Students who finish work early can choreograph a dance for the class or you can prepare several to have on hand and pull out when your class needs to burn some extra energy.

Laminate (if possible) and cut out the following cards. Enjoy coding and dancing!


** This is part of my growing bundle on coding resources.See it here. **

Remember to leave feedback to earn TPT store credit towards future purchases! :)

Total Pages
13 pages
Answer Key
Does not apply
Teaching Duration
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