Friday, October 20, 2017

Student's reports on Scratch programming

Two pedagogical ideas put together:

Number one. MIT's Scratch is known for providing a stepping stone to the fascinating world of computer programming. The scratch programming philosophy is about creating new code or remix existing coding contents, based on a very intuitive and visual block instruction set. Students develop technological fluencies, as well as creative and design skills with every project they develop.

Number two. Reflection and metacognition strategies are two key features of visible thinking routines. Students that consistently reflect on- and are capable of describing- their learning routines,  achieve a deeper understanding of the subject they study.

How these two ideas come together?

First. Students were presented with a number of introductory projects to learn how to create scripts using Scratch. There is plenty of resources to accomplish this step, one resource I enjoy using is the scratch cards. Here is the link to access them, cards are available in many languages: cards. If you need the cards in a different language, just scroll down and click on the dropdown list.

Students working on their projects

Second. After a couple of sessions, Ss were ready to gear up and the cards were no longer a challenge. At that point in time, more complex projects were introduced. One more time (I really love using OER /open educational resources/ resources) I went with a couple of open access books. "The creative computing" books are a great option, you can download them from here: creative computing.
If you download the creative computing books, both the workbook and the teacher guide, you'll notice that a number of reflection stems are provided. Here it comes to pedagogical idea number two. Students are not only required to program, they are also invited to reflect on their learning.

Third.  Sharing with the world. Each Computer Science class has a blog in which students publish their work and reflect on their learning.

Student's report specimen. Red text is teacher's interpretation. 

Student's report specimen. Red text is teacher's interpretation.

. Some formatting and layout suggestions were made during sessions, like image centering and framing, use of bold for enhancing important concepts. It also was suggested that no text wrapping around images should be used. Additionally, a combination of text and image was designed to emphasize a short introduction paragraph.

Reports created by the students


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