Thursday, January 20, 2011

Kate's Scratch Reflection

The first day I worked with Scratch I stumbled around trying to figure out how to work the scripts. It seemed slow moving, but then it all ‘clicked.’ After my first Scratch, I asked my daughter to work with me. We made one together. Then she made one independently. We alternated for a few. Then ended the evening making one more together. During this process, we discovered that some of the “Sprites” had script attached. That’s when we started to modify and apply it to our own creations. It was very rewarding to spend that time together and learn something new – side-by-side! We were teaching each other – and as a cheesy “EDUC-mom” – that evening will go down in history as one of those moments we won’t forget……she kept saying, “Isn’t this fun, mom!?”

My first creation (without Sam) was just a man walking on a sidewalk. The next one was created together. It was all about the music! Samantha wanted the sprites to dance to music coming from a radio. So I drew the boom box playing music and she drew the people, fish, and the photo hanging of a rabbit. She also suggested that the fish say “blub blub” - we wanted to record it, but the sound was ‘crackling’ when we played it back. Anyone else have this issue?? We tried to get the people to dance, but all we could do was make them spin. Then, we found sprites with script! That’s when I made a skit with two people dancing and jumping in a garden. I think I will keep playing around to see what else I can do, as soon as I can get my computer to myself!
During the process of creating, I learned that you need to visualize how the code is going to tell the sprite to work. This visualization is an art, in my opinion. This process requires a sequential thought process that requires trial and error until you can get it down! Construct and reconstruct – construct and reconstruct! I do believe once I learn it, it will be like riding a bike – I’ll never forget and I’ll be able to build upon it to make more sophisticated videos. How exciting!
This process reminded me of building a website with Adobe. There is a ton of visualization, trial and error, construction and reconstruction – code – script – photos – text – etc. I also think it is a great way to motivate kids to work with Math and Reading! Samantha says she hates Math – but she was working with Math this entire time – enjoying every minute of it. It’s the ‘worksheets’ she hates!!!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Kate! So glad that you could pull your daughter in with you. For me the real test of any application is whether kids are interested in it and stick with it. Keep us posted on whether it holds her attention! The sequential thought process that you talk about above is actually a major part of the National Science Foundation's current emphasis on computational thinking... They just released a major report this last year but you can expect to hear more on this theme in the years ahead.