You will want to "scratch" after you've seen this program! Scratch is a way for children (and you!) to learn how to create computer programs. It's easy and brightly-colored and somewhat like playing with virtual Legos. Push a button, and your creation can sing or move or do much more.
The program, Scratch, was created by the amazingly bright minds at MIT (the Massachusetts Institute of Technology), who describe it like this:
Scratch is a new programming language that makes it easy to create your own interactive stories, animations, games, music, and art — and share your creations on the web.
Scratch is designed to help young people (ages 8 and up) develop 21st century learning skills. As they create Scratch projects, young people learn important mathematical and computational ideas, while also gaining a deeper understanding of the process of design.
How is this educational? MIT has this to say…
As young people create projects in Scratch, they learn many of the 21st century skills that will be critical to success in the future: thinking creatively, communicating clearly, analyzing systematically, using technologies fluently, collaborating effectively, designing iteratively, learning continuously.
Scratch can be used in many different settings: schools, museums, community centers, and homes. It is intended especially for 8- to 16-year-olds, but younger children can work on Scratch projects with their parents or older siblings, and college students use Scratch in some introductory computer science classes.
If you are new to computer programming, don't worry, you can still teach with Scratch!
- Visit the Educators page for a getting started guide and more.
- Visit Scratch in the News to read what the media says about the program, including big media companies like the NY Times, BBC and Scholastic Magazine.
- Visit the main page and start Scratching! It's easy enough to figure out that you really don't need to read anything to start.
- Be a part of Scratch Day, May 22, 2010.
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