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Creating Games with Scratch

Coding Games, Scratch, Uncategorized By September 9, 2019 Tags: , , No Comments

What is Scratch?

Scratch is a visual programming language with a drag and drop block system. It also includes a pretty powerful paint editor, as well as world-wide community of users.

Scratch was created by the MIT Media Lab for the purposes of teaching people of all ages how to code.

Learning how to use Scratch

Creating a Scratch account is easy and free. An email account is required to activate the account and parents should monitor the community activity when their children are using Scratch.

Many schools and communities host Scratch classes and workshops, but it is possible to learn on your own. There are lots of resources for educators to teach Scratch, and coding experience is not required.

Using Scratch to Create Games

One of the best books I’ve found to teach game coding is “Coding Games in Scratch“, by Jon Woodcock. This book is perfect for kids, ages 8-12, and it has step by step instructions for creating races, mazes, puzzles and multi-player platforms. Coding concepts are explained throughout the book and kids love to collaborate and help each other.

Summary

In my experience teaching Scratch to kids, they not only love the program, but they learn how to solve problems and think creatively. Gaming adds another layer of fun and challenge to the learning process. I would suggest starting with a basic Scratch workshop to get the fundamentals before moving on to coding games. However, it really doesn’t matter where you start, Scratch is a great programming language for kids or anybody interested in learning how to code.

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5 Reasons Why Your Kids Should Learn Computer Programming

Uncategorized By January 7, 2016 No Comments

1. By the year 2020, according to the US Labor Bureau, there will be 1,000,000 jobs in STEM (Science, technology, engineering and Math). The shortage of qualified candidates to fill these positions is staggering. The average salary for a computer programmer in 2013 was $76,000. So if you want to ensure your child’s future, in terms of a career, make sure they get education and training in the field of computer science.

2. The k-12 schools, both public and private, are simply not meeting the needs of children when it comes to STEM, especially in the area of computer science. Only a handful of high schools even offer computer science courses, and many of the classes do not count towards the needed requirements for graduation.

3. Learning computer programming helps your child develop skills that will benefit her in other areas, such as logical thinking and problem solving. Developing programs and applications also requires creative thinking, and many students love the freedom in creating digital art.

4. Statistics have shown that the earlier a child is introduced to programming concepts, the easier it will be to transition into more advanced computing skills. Kids who have been exposed to computer science in grade school are twice as likely to major in computer science in college. If your kid loves to play computer games, chances are he will love learning how to create computer games even more!

5. More than two thirds of jobs requiring programming knowledge are not in the computer science field. For instance, industries such as sales and marketing, business, and communications are all moving in the digital direction, and more jobs than ever will require some knowledge of computer programming and software.

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