24 Jun

Start Scratching Session 8

Description

This session introduces the concept of variables through the specific example of keeping score in a game. The key concepts of variables in Scratch are explored using a simple game.

How is it tailored for 5-7 year olds?

  • The general concept of variables is not developed, rather a readily understandable use case is employed
  • Similarly with negative numbers, the specific use case is described (a way to make the score smaller) rather than the general concept
  • The game purposely starts in a very simple form that isolates the use of variables, but has many incremental improvements to suit a wide variety of ability

What is covered ?

  • Variables through a simple game
  • Resizing sprite

Click below for handout including step by step guide to completing the session.

StartScratching8

17 Jun

Start Scratching Session 7

Description

This session further develops the idea of conditional control, i.e. programs that can give a wide variety of results rather than simply going through a fixed flow of instructions. The specific goal of this session is to show the students how a sprites movement can be controlled using keys.

How is it tailored for 5-7 year olds?

More concise approach to movement using co-ordinates is not used, this would require both use of the co-ordinate system and negative numbers. This approach used does involve angles, however these can be ‘bypassed’ via the drop down menu

What is covered? 

  • Multiple Events (when left arrow clicked, when right arrow clicked…..)
  • Point in direction

Click below for handout including step by step guide to completing the session.

StartScratching7

03 Jun

Start Scratching Session 6

Description

The goal of this class is to introduce two new features, ‘if’ blocks that allow conditional control, and sensing blocks that allow the sprite to react to various events. Initially a basic sensing block is constructed for a single sprite, with emphasis placed on the need to sense ‘forever’. Next a second sprite is introduced and the first sprite senses it, and finally the sense colour function is suggested as an extra task. These building blocks allow the concept of conditionality to be used in programs, which has significant utility.

How is it tailored for 5-7 year olds?

  • Incremental approach, very simple example first and students given time to absorb the concept
  • No backgrounds used until the last example, these can be distracting

What is covered?  

  • Conditional control (if -> then)
  • Sensing (touching)

Click below for handout including step by step guide to completing the session.

StartScratching6