Scratch: Block-Based Programming to Create Games and Stories

Lorenzo Gaspari

Concept by
Lorenzo Gaspari

Table of Contents

New Course

Description

Nowadays schools require students to approach coding from an early age.

Teachers then must adapt and try to find interesting, modern, and interactive ways to teach programming to young pupils and this can be challenging.

This course aims to show participants more interactive activities that they can use to teach Scratch to students.

During the course, participants will learn how to transform Scratch into a table game, how to play it, with the students, without the use of a laptop, and how to use this game to make Scratch even more fun.

Then participants will then practice and extend their knowledge of Scratch through some project-based exercises that will give participants the possibility to have an even deeper and wider view of the exciting world of Scratch.

Requirements

Suggested computer proficiency: Intermediate

Learning outcomes

The course will help the participants to:

  • Learn to use Scratch in a completely analogical way to create activities in class that can be carried out in groups;
  • Learn creative ways to explore coding;
  • Learn the best ways to adapt to a computer lab environment;
  • Manage spaces and involve your student even more;
  • Practice your IT and programming skills with creative challenges;
  • Improve your Scratch portfolio with new programs and activities.

Tentative schedule

Day 1 – Introduction to the course

  • Introduction to the course, the school, and the external week activities;
  • Icebreaker activities;
  • Presentations of the participants’ schools;
  • Introduction to Scratch.

Day 2 – Analogical activities

  • The project starts from an analog base. Instead of immediately taking the students to work with the computer, some activities are carried out in groups in a completely analogical way.

Day 3 – The Magic Cat (or Alice’s Cat)

  • The Magic Cat (or Alice’s cat) is a very simple but very important program because it is all based on the concept of “broadcast a message”, of sending a communication message to other objects in the scene. This allows students to work with sprite costumes and modify these costumes based on external events that communicate a message when they are activated.

Day 4 – SpaceShip Battle

  • SpaceShip Battle is a classic 90’s video game. The game consists of a spaceship that travels and tries to defend itself from enemy attacks. This game is considered the basic “tutorial” for those who want to start approaching the world of video game construction. The game has a higher complexity than other projects as it includes concepts such as sprite cloning, different interdependent variables, and movement in space. At the end of the project, the students take home a real video game.

Day 5 – Creating an interactive Scratch project

  • Use your camera to create an interactive Scratch project. On this day the students will learn to implement external libraries in their project. The “pen” and “camera” libraries will be the most used.

Day 6 – Course closure and cultural activities

  • Course evaluation: round-up of acquired competencies, feedback, and discussion;
  • Awarding of the course Certificate of Attendance;
  • Excursion and other external cultural activities.

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