At last managed to lead my first “Code Club” session – it had a slightly chaotic start as none of the computers we were using had Scratch installed and nor did we have access to a login that allowed us to install Scratch in the Windows “Programs” directory – but once we worked around that we all had great fun.
From the start it was obvious that Scratch made sense to the kids – they immediately grasped that the endless loop control would set the actions it enclosed to run endlessly. Of course nobody (apart from Visual Basic users?) works with similar simple graphics tools when writing an industrial strength program, but that was not the point: this is about teaching loops, conditionals and branches and so on.
The lost time at the start meant it was all a bit hurried so I do not know how much of the programming the children took in – as opposed to just ensuring that their Scratch scripts matched those in the worksheet. But on the first time out – none of the children had used Scratch before – simply being able to manipulate the programming elements was probably more than enough.
In any case, all of them were hugely enthusiastic when I told them they could install Scratch on any computer they had at home and practise on it there.
Code Club feels like a huge success to me already.
- Code Club Week 1 First Thoughts (antsict.wordpress.com)
- Raspberry Pi in schools (raspberrypi.org)
- Week 6 in ScratchPiBot Club (cymplecy.wordpress.com)
- Coding for kids is as easy as Pi (wired.co.uk)
- A nostalgic look at what a 13 year old can do with a C64 (hackaday.com)
- Codecademy’s Zach Sims is leading a movement; now can he build a business? [GigaOM] (gigaom.com)
- Week 4 – ShrimpingIT Maker Club (cymplecy.wordpress.com)