Scratch: Programming for Everyone
Scratch is a programming language that enables kids to create their own games, animated stories, and interactive art and share their creations with one another over the Internet. Scratch builds on the long tradition of Logo and LEGO/Logo, but takes advantage of new computational ideas and capabilities to make it easier for kids to get started with programming and to extend the range of what kids can create and learn. Scratch was developed by the Lifelong Kindergarten research group at the MIT Media Lab, in collaboration with KIDS research group at the UCLA Graduate School of Education & Information Studies. The ultimate goal is to help kids become fluent with digital media, empowering them to express themselves creatively and make connections to powerful ideas.
Additionally, Scratch is an online community where all the members publish, remix, and share their projects, discuss and learn about their experiences in forums, and build networks of friends and collaborators. In other words, the SCRATCH online community is an "affinity space", in which people learn (informally) through participation. The community has grown very fast and after one year of being online has reached 149,286 registered members and nowadays displays 200,273 projects --the 15% of these projects are remixes of other ones.
Sample Student Project
Senior English students were required to create a movie using a creative technology that displayed their understanding of the play Macbeth. Student were allowed to work with other person on this project. It was a culminating activity for our Shakespeare unit. Scratch was used to help students show their understanding of the play and the major themes and concepts. The project needed to include the following:
- A minimum of two scenes (either created by the student or taken from the play)
- Two characters - staying true to the characters roles in the play
- A background appropriate for the scenes being shown
- A minimum of 6 lines written in their own language
- A minimum of 2 quotes taken directly from the text and strategically placed in the scenes
- Some sort of sound recording or music
See a few student Scratch projects. Enjoy!
Project Sample 1
Project Sample 2
Project Sample 3
Project Sample 4
Project Sample 5
Next up, see Virtual Worlds