After using my phone’s GPS to find the ICS - I was met by many eager teachers wanting to find out more about Scratch. Our teachers: Clare from http://www.lero.ie/ and Maureen , a 2nd level teacher working in West Cork, both have been teaching Scratch for years! We started the lesson by having an intro to Scratch, then straight onto coding. We got a great work book, you can but it here or go to the web site, register and download it for free! It may be a bit too advanced for primary school pupils but it would help you as a teacher to become familiar with Scratch and it would give them ideas of how to implement in class.
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|Yes, I like to play with Paint! that's me with the pink halo! We are looking at each other projects! What a day! Picture taken by Stephen Howell|
We started off by drawing a hexagon:
We then had to draw a circle, square, and then draw two shapes with the one program and then we had to draw the two shapes in loops!
When we were discussing the coding someone said “it’s like making tea, put left hand out, open hand, use fingers to grasp kettle, make a fist around kettle handle, pick up the kettle, turn 190 degrees.....” the amount of detail you need in coding is the same so it’s like making a cuppa detailing the most minute details – cause the computer is stupid and you have to tell it what to do!
So after a tough morning, we started to mess around with importing projects (prob my FAVE thing about Scratch). We then would change the projects by making a new background, painting a new sprite etc. When my new sprite would not do as he was told...well I was annoyed. So our fabulous teachers were at hand to help, seriously...they told me to right click on my sprite and click on help....which would tell me what the code was meant to be doing:
I messed around with making a cool background with paint. Clare asked me if I was good at art, I just shrugged and said “well, I am a primary school teacher...so likeeeeeee we are good at everything!” My wry humour was appreciated...so when everyone laughed I joined in – not wanting to ask “how is that funny..It’s true!!) ;-)
We then spent the rest of the day and the next day, looking at games, changing the code, making out own games and of course discussing the benefits of Scratch. This is the first game I made: Good Vs Bad
Here is the project I made with two other teachers: History
We then were lucky to have the legendary Stephen Howell (Twitter - @saorog)
I feel I can be a tad long winded and would like to make my blog post even cool(!!) so I am doing a writing course - anyway Stephen summed up Scratch far better than I ever could and in a more succinct manner (just as well I am doing that writing course...watch out Stephen!!)
He said “So much of technology is about consuming,...like the i pad so we need to get across about creating!
We are passionate about Scratch as it is critically important to get across the wonder of making something out of nothing”
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How to use Scratch in class – why with Scratch cards of course - http://info.scratch.mit.edu/Support/Scratch_Cards
Great resources http://info.scratch.mit.edu/Support
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