Students will create a Caesar cipher wheel, explore word patterns, and decrypt a message using a Caesar cipher tool.
These notes form a brief introduction to using and cracking substitution ciphers and transposition ciphers, to accompany the teaching materials provided with the University of Southampton National Cipher Challenge. The website for the competition can be found at www.cipherchallenge.org.
Written by Prof. Graham A. Niblo
What is Cryptography? A story which takes us from Caesar to Claude Shannon. Created by Brit Cruise.
On the left side of the linked webpage, there are additional resources related to cryptology, including Caesar cipher, polyalphabetic cipher, and the Enigma machine.
Using a special set of offline commands, 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.
This unplugged lesson brings the class together as a team with a simple task to complete: get a "robot" to stack cups in a specific design. Students will work to recognize real-world actions as potential instructions in code. The art of following precise instructions will also be practiced, as students work to translate algorithms into code, using the symbols provided. If problems arise in the code, students should work together to recognize bugs and build solutions. This activity lays the groundwork for the programming that students will do throughout the course as they learn the importance of defining a clearly communicated algorithm.
Students will be able to:- reframe a sequence of steps as an encoded program.- identify and address bugs or errors in sequenced instructions.
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