Scratch is a great way to introduce computer programming to students.
Scratch has come a long way since I first used it in 2009. Now that it is web-based, it is more user-friendly than before. The ability to drag-and-drop building blocks for their sprites really eases their minds. It really exercises problem-solving and critical thinking skills as students work to program their sprites. Teachers could create review games for content in their classroom.
How I Use It
I first introduced students to computer programming with a free app called Cargo-bot. It introduces the basic concepts before getting them started with Scratch. I then used Scratch to get my students' feet wet with computer programming in my technology class. Math and English skills also get exercised as students use angles, degrees, and axis as well as story-telling to complete their project.