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Week 3: Evaluating Scratch

Students will continue to work on the Scratch projects they started last week.  It is important that we regularly connect back to similar concepts in computer programming such as: • Loops • If/Then conditions • Sequences • Variables • Coordination and Synchronization • Random numbers • Trial and Error. Look at this document to see the skills you’re currently learning.

By studying the skill sets for each of the games, students can check on their learning progress. You are encouraged to move onto the different games so as to learn new skills.

Each game has an extension exercise which you’re encouraged to complete as this ensures that you think a little on your own time – instead of simply copying chunks of code.   Once you’ve completed two of the games from: Shooting, Racing and Pong, as well as the PacMan game, you are to complete the evaluation form. The form encourages you to check the skill boxes where you feel most confident and thereby flags up those skills on which you need to spend more time.

I would also encourage students to expand their horizons and produce a Scratch project which is not a game. Why not try some digital storytelling? Select some examples from the Scratch database of files.

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Summer Term: Week 1

April 13, 2010 Leave a comment

This week we’ll begin working with SCRATCH. Scratch is a software application which allows us to make simple and complex programmes for animating objects on screen.

To enable us to experience how prgramming instructions work, we’ll discuss the steps to make a cup of tea. Students should see that there is much careful “step planning” in order to produce this seemingly simple procedure. Scratch works with “building blocks” of instructions which are dragged and droppped into place in order to build up a programme. We’ll look at some examples of Scratch so that we can see what one can create. (Students can log onto the Scratch website and create their own collection of favourite programmes at home. These can also be downloaded and added to.) 

1. Look at this presentation on the concepts of Scratch.

 2. Study the basic Scratch interface.  

3. Once we’ve understood the Scratch interface we’ll construct an aquarium.

4. Next we’ll try some other ideas in the aquarium.

5. Experiment!

(Thanks to Margaret Low & Jean Bodycote for the tutorials.)

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