Halswell School student, Callum, and his teacher, Fraser Malins explain how Scratch supports student learning with creativity, logical thinking, and problem solving.
Callum: We’ve got Scratch club at school after school on Mondays and Thursdays and that runs from 4.30 to 5.30. What we do is we have a group of about fifteen people and they come along and do some Scratch. So Scratch is like a programming language and it’s kind of the first step towards html, which is used for websites. There’s commands that you do, like move this far, if this happens, do that and stuff like that.
Fraser Malins: It’s great problem solving and we see it as a great opportunity for students to work cooperatively, to meet a need, to put students in a context, for students to create opportunities for leadership.
Callum: We normally make games and I’ve made a maths game for my little buddies once which was quite cool.
Fraser Malins: Some Year 7 and 8 students have actually come up with a pre-quiz for our Year 3-4 students as a Scratch game so it’s a great opportunity for our students to actually to work with students from other learning teams, to develop leadership opportunities. It’s a great maths concept and it’s also great for some great literacy skills as well.
Callum: Creating the commands in Scratch helps you to learn in maths and other subjects. You need to know what you want to make first and then you’ll just put “if this happens” and you need to choose the right things to put in.
Fraser Malins: An opportunity that was offered to our students and to our school was a code club was running a mash up day. It was running at the Selwyn House School and it was an opportunity that we could send thirty students along and those thirty students had a great opportunity. And when we came back, we discussed with the students the benefits of it. And, they loved it. And we said, “Well what can we do as a school that’s really passionate about ICT?” And we said, “Okay well why don’t we run a day where we can have Scratch as a theme for the day? And we could invite schools along.” And we said, “Okay well can you run it?” And the students said, “Oh yeah, we’ll be keen.” So we’ve looked to run a day and we’re going to run it in about two weeks time where students are going to come in from six different schools. We’re going to have it in our hall for the day and we’re going to break it into students that are going to run the day and we’re also going have our students that are really keen to build their leadership and be experts and support students from other schools. We really see it as a great opportunity to really tie it into our digital learning programmes.