Scratch: Your First Ten Minutes


At CoderDojo this weekend, I gave a spiel about Scratch programs being like plays (stage, backdrops, costumes, scripts) to new students and flustered parents more times than I can count, so I decided for today I’d make a printable set of uber-readable instructions for getting familiar with those terms. Since it’s Tooltime Tuesday again, I’m sharing it here. I’d love some feedback as to how it could be written, use color, or balance whitespace and print more effectively!

Introducing…tooltime Tuesdays!

tim allen

So I am a sucker for 90s memories and for alliteration. And part of my intent for this blog was to connect people to resources, teaching tips, and accounts of my own teaching experience to learn from and try for themselves, not just to rant (/preach to the choir, most likely).

To that end, I’m introducing a suggested resources page that I’ll add to periodically. Today I’d like to highlight three things, two for teachers and one for students:

  • The Google code-in contest: Unlike typical programming competitions, students get experience writing/debugging/documenting/marketing real-life code for open-source software. If you have middle/high school students at almost any level of tech expertise (techspertise? …probably not), there’s something for them here.
  • Another Google resource, this one for CS teachers: a K-12 computer science search engine.¬†I have yet to dig deep into this, but it seems useful so far.
  • For science teachers who’d like to learn to incorporate more computing into their curricula, join me in working through Project GUTS’s online PD course on computer modeling for middle/high school science courses. GUTS stands for Growing Up Thinking Scientifically, and the course involves an online portfolio as well as a science-related Hour of Code¬†activity.

More to come! Stay tuned.