Thursday, 23 February 2012

Scratch programming

For a number of years we have been using Scratch programming software in our learning activities. Class groups and even teachers on training courses have programmed interactive art, games and animations with music, voice recordings and sound effects. All done in an accessible building-block programming software.

Scratch is developed by the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at the MIT Media Lab. It is completely free and is particularly designed for younger people to get them started in programming - one of the key areas for developing ICT skills, knowledge and understanding. The government has named Scratch as a vehicle for  teaching and learning in a modern IT curriculum.

In the process of creating interactive stories, games, and animations with Scratch, young people can learn computational programming skills and concepts.

Here at the e-Learning Centre we offer support for teaching and learning Scratch programming:

  • Leading the teaching of class groups in older Primary school classes in support of ICT and Control Technology, and with a bit of imagination - across the curriculum.
  • Leading the teaching of classes across year groups in Secondary schools. Scratch can be taught within Art (interactive artworks), Design and Technology (systems and control), Maths (logic, numeracy) and ICT (programming) and in other curriculum areas for introducing different ways for students to be creative - how about interactive animations in French?
  • INSET and CPD in learning to use Scratch and starting points for teachers in Primary and Secondary schools in half-day courses at our centre or in schools.
  • Medium-term planning for implementing Scratch programming into curriculum areas, supported by Schemes of Learning, lesson plans, leading lessons, co-teaching and technical support.
Using Scratch with Lego WeDo

We can now offer Scratch sessions that incorporate Lego WeDo models. By connecting the Lego WeDo to a computer running Scratch, you can learn:
  • How to control models you build, such as turning motors
  • How to use the tilt sensors on  the models to interact with the software interactively (as the video above shows.

Please be in contact with Jamie at the e-Learning Centre for more information on booking classes, CPD or even if you just want to find out more about Scratch software and what we can offer to support your teaching and your students' learning.
Nottingham e-Learning Community is part of Nottingham City Council, Children and Adults