Squeezing Pictures Into Codes

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In this activity, learners will explore how computers represent pictures using pixels. Starting with a blank grid, learners will use a code to color in some squares on the paper and leave others blank. In the end, they will have created a picture similar to how a computer does. This activity includes step-by-step instructions with pictures, an explanation of the computer science behind the activity, and optional extensions.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per student

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 14

Resource Type:


Materials List (per student)


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Computing
      • Computer Science
      • Information Systems
      • Information Technology

Informal Categories

  • Arts and Crafts
  • Computers


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



Funding Sources:

  • Google
  • Microsoft