Introduction to Scratch Part III: How do parents and teachers get started using Scratch?

At almost every event or workshop we attend, parents ask our team members the same question, “How do I encourage my child to learn about coding?” While there are a number of great learn-to-code resources available today, Scratch is our go-to suggestion. Each week we’ll be posting a new tip or tutorial for learning how to code in Scratch. Follow along as we explore this great coding resource together.

Click here for Part I: What is Scratch?

Click here for Part II: Creating Custom MaKey MaKey Instruments

Introduction to Scratch Part III: How do parents and teachers get started using Scratch?

The Internet gives us access to so much information that it makes it difficult to know where to start when learning a new skill. This information overload often makes it intimidating to start new projects. We find one of the best ways to get started learning how to use Scratch is to follow the tutorials built right into Scratch itself.

In the desktop version of Scratch (available for free on OSX, Windows, and Linux) you can open a “help” menu that gives you step-by-step tutorials  On a number of different topics.

Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 12.19.58 PMFor this week’s blog post we chose the tutorial, “Create a Pong Game.” After trying this tutorial we can recommend this as a great first step to exploring Scratch. The tutorial walks you through the basics of Sprites, Backdrops, Movement, and Object Interactions. Within 20 minutes of starting the tutorial, we had built a simple pong-style game staring a cartoon version of the MakerBus. You can play our creation by clicking the image below.

Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 2.10.06 PMIf you’re looking for other ways to explore Scratch, we’ve compiled a list of great introductory articles with ideas for getting started.

Play to Learn: The Scratch Programming Language Sneaks Serious Fun into the Classroom

Using Scratch in the Classroom: Five Ideas

Scratch User Guide: Installing & Getting Started with Scratch

Getting Started with Scratch

A Programmer’s Guide to Scratch 1.4

This week’s blog post is going to be on the shorter side since the MakerBus is super busy with events and planning the upcoming renovations on the interior of the bus. Look for a more in-depth blog post about learning to use Scratch next week.

If you liked this article, why not follow the MakerBus on twitter (@DHMakerBus) or like us on Facebook (/dhmakerbus)? We post some of the most creative maker projects found on the web every day. If you #getonthebus, we promise a fun ride!

-The MakerBus team

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