Control technology is one of the most exciting aspects of ICT for pupils and probably the most dreaded for teachers! The thought of teaching pupils how to get control boxes, motors, buzzers, switches and batteries to work altogether can be daunting for most teachers. Making games is a great introduction to control technology and Scratch is an easy way to get pupils excited about making games. It is a free program and can be downloaded very quickly.
To help you work out how to use Scratch visit https://learnscratch.org/ and watch some of the 32 very short video casts which explain how to perform many simple tasks. There is actually no need to teach the pupils Scratch – just play them one of these videos at a time and let them practice!
The Learn Scratch Website offers Nine Learning Skills in Three Areas:
- Information and Media Literacy Skills
- Communication Skills
- Critical Thinking and Systems Thinking
- Problem Identification, Formulation & Solution
- Creativity and Intellectual Curiosity
- Interpersonal and Collaborative Skills
- Accountability and Adaptability
- Social Responsibility
There are downloadable lesson plans for the three areas in three different booklets!
Once pupils have mastered the basics they can download and unpick hundreds of games already made to explore how they were made, to improved, adopt, adapt etc. So much more can be learned from this sort of activity.
The Official Website – download the program and ready made games to examine