Teacher Review for Scratch

Perfect way to introduce children to coding and computational thinking

Megan H.
Head of Academic Technology
The Park School
Brookline, United States
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My Grades Pre-K, K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
My Rating
Learning Scores
Engagement
Pedagogy
Support
My Students Liked It Yes
My Students Learned Yes
I Would Recommend It Yes
Setup Time Less than 5 minutes
Great for Creation
Further application
Individual
Knowledge gain
Practice
Student-driven work
Teacher-led lessons
Whole class
Great with Advanced learners
ELL
General
Low literacy
How I Use It
Scratch has been my go-to programming language for students in Grades 2-12 for the past decade. Scratch is an online programming environment designed specifically for this age group. I have found it to be a great tool for integrating technology into any and all subject areas. Scratch has been described as having "low floors, high ceilings, and wide walls." It can reach a broad range of students because of its open-ended, student-centered design. Because our students easily forget passwords, and younger students can take a long time to login, it is very helpful for teachers to create student accounts ahead of time. I highly recommend that teachers create studios for class projects to curate them for easier retrieval at a later time. Lastly, I can't recommend highly enough the Scratch Creative Computing Curriculum Guide for beginner teachers who want to introduce coding to their students.
My Take
There is a learning curve with this tool, but it is definitely worth the time investment. I recommend students (and teachers!) use the scratch cards and scratch starter projects to get started. It helps to learn some basic blocks before trying to use them to create a school project. In other words, it's helpful to designate time to become familiar with the tool before applying it to curricular content.