Before attending class, students should complete the Iteration Preview assignment.

Learning Goals

  • Explain the concept of iterating over an Array
  • Implement syntax for each for a variety of situations


  • code block
  • iterate
  • method

Warm Up

Define a variable that stores an Array of 4 Strings; each String should be an email address.

Using the tools we've learned about in Mod 0 so far, print out a sentence that says, "Send email to: [insert email address]" for each email address in your array.

Be ready to discuss!


each is a method in Ruby that can be used to iterate over an Array. This means, it can take action on each element of an Array, even when the code for that action is only written once. Look at the following code snippets, and notice what is familiar and what is new to you:

nums = [1, 2, 3, 4]

nums.each do |num|
  puts "The current number is #{num}."

# =======================

bigger_nums = [12, 18, 22, 64, 122]

bigger_nums.each do |num|
  puts "The current number is #{num}."

Before we break down each part of the code, fork this which has the same code in the snippets above.

Run the code. Work to make sense of how this code is producing the outcome it is. A great way to do that is tweak one piece of the code, then observe the result.

Breakdown of an each method call:

  • nums - this tells Ruby which Array it should iterate over
  • .each - this calls the each method on the Array. Ruby now expects the following:
    • do - this is a Ruby keyword that must follow each; it tells the program to start taking action
    • |num| - inside the pipe characters (|, which can be found just under the delete key on your keyboard), the developer decides on a name for a single element in the Array. Usually, this is the singular form of the Arrays variable name
    • 1 or more lines of code, indented. This code will run for each of the elements in the Array. If there are 100 elements, this line will run 100 times. If there is 1 element, this line will run 1 time
    • end - this tells the program to be done with the each block, and is required.
  • Anything written inside of the do and end is referred to as the code block

We can also read through annotations of the same code snippet to understand what each part does:

# declare a variable nums, stores an Array of 4 Integers
nums = [1, 2, 3, 4]

# Call the each method on nums Array
# Use "num" as variable name for each element as it's being iterated over
nums.each do |num|
  # puts an interpolated sentence using the current value of num
  puts "The current number is #{num}."
# end the each block

# The each block will run 4 times because there are 4 elements in the Array
# The first time it runs, the Integer 1 is the value of the num variable
# The second time it runs, the Integer 2 is the value of the num variable
# The third time it runs, the Integer 3 is the value of the num variable
# The fourth time it runs, the Integer 4 is the value of the num variable
# Once it's run on every element in the Array, it reads the end keyword, and is finished

Predict What Will Happen

Read each of the following code snippets and predict what the output will be. Then, run the code in irb (or in your preferred environment) to confirm your prediction.

balances = [100, 49, 98, 73, 56]

balances.each do |balance|
  puts balance + 10

# How many times did the code in the each block run? Why?
names = ["Cindy", "Oscar", "Rigo", "Joe", "Stephanie", "Tiff"]

names.each do |name|
  puts name.length

# How many times did the code in the each block run? Why?
# What was the value of "name" the first time the code ran?


Use the each method to solve each problem. You can do this work in the place that works best for you - irb, a Ruby file you create and open in Atom, or somewhere else.

Print out a greeting to each friend:

friends = ["Joe", "Jeff", "Alex", "Justina"]

Find the square of each number:

numbers = [2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12]

Print out each String in reverse (not sure how to do that? Google!):

words = ["sunny", "beach", "waves", "relax"]

Print out numbers that are greater than 10:

numbers = [10, 11, 7, 19, 4, 52, 89, 9, 12, 10]

Challenge: Print out only names that begin with "P":

names = ["Pilar", "Peach", "Pamela", "Tan", "Amanda", "Phil"]

Check For Understanding

Follow the directions in the README of this GitHub repository, and submit your fork in the submission form.