(Kiosud. 2010) Shark attack. Retrieved 16 March, 2013 from http://scratch.mit.edu/projects/1054660/
Phase 1 Introduction to Scratch as a programming environment
Phase 2 Extension project work with Scratch
Describe activity: By dragging blocks from the blocks palette to the scripts area, you are giving instructions (command sequences) to the sprite (animal) on the stage area. This activity developed to commanding the sprite to draw regular polygons, then to programming a simple racing car game and ping pong ball game.
As extension project work with Scratch, I found a more complex program on the internet (duly acknowledged) and created this to further develop my skills.
During Phase 1 and 2 of this course, I learnt that Scratch offers an opportunity to teach young children how to program a computer and create games. The thought processes involved collaborating in the planning, design and creation of a computer application. By using Scratch, children can improve their digital literacy as well as computer programming skills. Children learn how to control Scratch by using all the essential programming constructs like, sequencing, conditional branching, control structures and data manipulations.
Scratch programming involves IT skills and the creation of a typical application might involve:
• Drawing a sprite within the Scratch application.
• Importing a background picture from a photograph or a file created in another graphics application.
• Recording a sound file or incorporating an MP3 file into the application.
• Adding text with different fonts to an application.
• Moving sprites around the screen with turtle graphics commands.
• Manipulation and digital effects on graphics objects.
In linking these activities to the Australian Curriculum: Technologies, the activities will develop students who:
• are creative, innovative and enterprising when using traditional, contemporary and emerging technologies.
• effectively and responsibly select and use appropriate technologies, materials,
information, systems, tools and equipment when designing and creating socially, economically and environmentally sustainable products, services or environments.
• critique, evaluate and apply thinking skills and technologies processes that people use to shape their world, and to transfer that learning to other technology situations.
• individually and collaboratively plan, manage, create and produce solutions to
purposeful technology projects for personal, local, national and global settings.
• engage confidently with and make informed, ethical decisions about technologies
for personal wellbeing, recreation, everyday life, the world of work and preferred futures. (ACARA, 2013)
I have learnt through my activities with Scratch, that key skills such as problem solving can be learnt through programming. Programs are a set of instructions that a computer must follow to perform the task, whereby you can’t miss a link or it won’t work.
Scratch can be used in the lower grades (years 2-4 where students design and implement simple visual programs with user input and branching) (ACARA, 2013 p.71) of a primary classroom during maths lessons, where students control how the sprite moves by manipulating the x and y axis positions. For literacy, science and history/geography studies, the subject matter of the students’ creations can be geared toward the respective disciplines which would still provide students with the opportunity to learn the required curriculum but also incorporate the technology strand. Re-enactments of historical events and stories could be designed in Scratch. In an art class, students can design their own sprite and manipulate their appearance.
Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority. (2013). Draft Australian curriculum: Technologies. Retrieved 15 May, 2013 from http://consultation.australiancurriculum.edu.au/Static/docs/Technologies/Draft%20Australian%20Curriculum%20Technologies%20-%20February%202013.pdf