My 4th grade daughter signed up for an elective based on the Scratch programming language. To prepare, I downloaded Scratch to our home PC, and pointed out some video tutorials and getting started guides available on the Scratch website. Then I left it to her.
When I returned, she had made her first Scratch animation:
So it takes me several months just to get a handle on Objective C programming terms, and it takes my daughter one hour to build her first program. Gotta love kids.
The Scratch interface has different windows for building your program, and by dragging and dropping commands into place, you can “run” different scenarios with sound, variables, and animation. My daughter’s first effort was a flying unicorn who danced to music and then said a few messages out of a word bubble at the end of its flight.
If you have a youngster interesting in learning to program, here are the resources from Scratch:
- Scratch website (free download of the Scratch software)
- Scratch video tutorials
- Getting Started Guide (pdf)
Watch out – they may pick it up sooner than you expect!