Teach Computing

Revision notes, activities, lesson plans, teaching ideas, and other resources for GCSE, A-Level, and IB Computer Science teachers and students.

What's New

CommandPoint CAD

CommandPoint by Northrop Grumman offers a range of CAD systems for various ...

CAD+911 System

TriTech Software Systems is a company that specialises in Computer Aided Di...

London Ambulance CAD failure

The 1992 London Ambulance Service CAD failure is probably the most notoriou...

Washington State 911 Failure

A 911 emergency telephone system in Washington State and Oregon shut down f...

London ambulance failure (2017)

A 2017 failure of a London ambulance dispatch system is believed to have le...

Computer Aided Dispatch outage

A 911 system failure left emergency calls unanswered and is said to have co...

Load balancing videos

This short article and the associated video explain 5 load balancing algori...

Intergraph Computer-Aided Dispatch (I/CAD

Intergraph Computer-Aided Dispatch (I/CAD) is a system offering many of the...

Boolean logic worksheet pack

These three Boolean logic worksheets have exam style questions on logic sta...

Resources discount offer

3.1 Binary

Lesson resources

Binary crossword
Binary crossword
Computer Science crosswords pack
Computer Science crosswords pack
Number systems worksheet
Number systems revision worksheet
Binary and Hexadecimal exam
Binary and Hexadecimal test
Binary shifts worksheet
Binary shifts worksheet
Binary and hexadecimal posters
Binary & hex posters
Recommended IGCSE Computer Science textbooks
IGCSE Computer Science textbooks

3.1.1 Binary Representation

Introduction to binary

Introducing Binary

The new-look BBC Bitesize site have extensive notes on binary numbers, with clear diagrams and examples of how they work and how they can be added. Several videos brighten up the content and key concepts are related to real-life situations - such as CPU word size. Later pages of the notes cover conversion between different number bases. The site also features short multiple-choice quizes to test students' understanding of the key concepts.


Updated: 2015-04-15
Binary lesson resources

Lesson - Data representation - binary

This download contains all lesson resources necessary to teach students binary. It includes explanations of the system and lesson activities.

This lesson is one of the many excellent resources provided under CC-NC-SA by Mr Colley.


Updated: 2017-10-15
Counting in binary worksheet

Counting in binary

This handy PDF serves as a good summary sheet for students learning to count in binary. It covers decimal numbers from 0 to 63 (5 bits). It is good for GCSE and younger students, although it can be useful for older students too.

The sheet was created by Gary Kacmarcik at the excellent cse4k12 site and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.


Updated: 2017-10-17
Binary lesson activities

Binary and Hexadecimal starter activities

Two lesson starter, plenary, or homework activities are the binary crossword and the matching quiz. They test students' ability to read binary and hexadecimal, and convert between these systems and denary.


Updated: 2017-10-17
Base 2 calculator

Base 2 calculator

This interactive doesn't actually calculate - instead it lets students flip bits in a byte and see the result calculated automatically. It is most useful when first explaining binary concepts to students.


Updated: 2017-10-24
Binary cards interactive

Binary cards interactive

An online version of binary cards that can be switched on and off to produce a binary number. These are most useful when teaching younger children how binary numbers work.


Updated: 2017-10-24

3.1.2 Positive and negative binary numbers

Two's Complement

Why we use Two's Complement

This video explains how to represent negative numbers in binary. It explains why we can't use a simple sign bit to represent positive or negative numbers, and then looks at how one's complement solves this problem. Finally it explained how two's complement works and why it is used. Although the beginning of the video goes into a lot of detail, it is useful to understand exactly why two's complement is needed and used.


Updated: 2015-04-29

3.1.3 Binary conversion

Binary tetris

Binary Tetris

Binary Tetris is a flash game designed to help teach students the binary number system. Players must flip bits to achieve the required number, or add up the bits to calculate the number being represented. I'd recommend asking students to turn their sound off before starting this!


Updated: 2015-04-07
Binary game

Binary Fun

This simple game challenges players to flip the right bits to create the specified number. The current total is displayed as bits are changed, and there is a timer to complete against. Students may be surprised to learn this game was created using Scratch.


Updated: 2017-10-17
Binary to decimal

Binary-Decimal Conversions

This video contains lots of examples of converting binary numbers to decimal numbers, and vice versa. A good revision guide.


Updated: 2018-02-17

3.1.4 Binary arithmetic

Binary addition

Binary Addition & Overflow

Another excellent video from ComputerPhile with their usual clear explanations and worked examples. This video recaps binary numbers and then explains how to perform binary addition. It also deals with the potential problem of overflow and how it can be handled.


Updated: 2015-04-29
Binary shifts

Binary shifts - arithmetic and logical

This worksheet contains practice questions for performing logical shifts and arthimetic shifts on binary numbers. You can download the worksheet and the answers.


Updated: 2017-12-15
Shifts

Video: Logical shifts and Arithmetic shifts

These two videos cover logical binary shifts and arithmetic binary shifts - which for obvious reasons are often confused by students. It is recommended to watch the videos in this order, as the arithmetic shifts video explains some of the shortcomings of logical shifts. There are plenty of examples to help you understand each type.


Updated: 2018-02-17

3.1.5 Hexadecimal

Hexadecimal game

Hexadecimal-binary matching game

This is a fun little matching pairs style game in which players must match decimal numbers with their hexadecimal equivalents. A good way of testing students' ability to quickly perform mental conversions. Click here to play.


Updated: 2017-11-05
Binary crosswords

Binary crossword activities

These two puzzles are a great way to test students' hexadecimal to binary conversion skills. They work much like a normal crossword, except that the clues are written in hexadecimal and the answers must be written in binary. Once complete, the crosswords make simple bitmap images if the 1s are shaded and the zeroes left blank. You can download puzzle 1 (answers) and puzzle 2 (answers).

These puzzles were created by Gary Kacmarcik at the Computer Science & Engineering for K-12 site - an excellent site which I recommend you visit. They are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 license.


Updated: 2015-04-15
Binary to hexadecimal conversion

Binary to hexadecimal

A worksheet that explains the "divide into groups of 4" method of converting binary numbers to hexadecimal numbers.

This was created by Gary Kacmarcik at the Computer Science & Engineering for K-12 site - an excellent site which I recommend you visit. They are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 license.


Updated: 2015-04-16
Hexadecimal lesson

Lesson - Data representation - hexadecimal

This download contains all lesson resources necessary to teach students base 16 (hexadecimal). It includes PowerPoint presentations that cover the number system and converting to denary and binary. There are also some nice hex table handouts for students who may be struggling to grasp the concepts. how sound is represented in binary.

This lesson is one of the many excellent resources provided under CC-NC-SA by Mr Colley. I've added PDF versions of the .pub versions found in the original download, for those who don't have Microsoft Publisher.


Updated: 2017-10-15
Hexadecimal worksheet

Counting in hex

Similar to the binary sheet, this handy document covers decimal numbers 0 to 63. It is useful for teaching students who are new to binary, or as a quick recap for those revising it. The sheet was created by Gary Kacmarcik at the excellent cse4k12 site and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.


Updated: 2017-10-17