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Reflections on Scratch Educator Meetup @ MIT: Saturday, April 16, 2011

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Karen Brennan

Thanks to everyone who was able to join us at MIT for yesterday's Scratch educator meetup! Here are some notes, reflections, and next steps...

1. Things we saw in Show & Tell

Videos of the Show & Tell presentations will be posted later this week. In the meantime, here are some notes:

  • Tom Kowalczyk shared some of the work that he's doing in the domain of K-12 workforce development.
  • Anushka Paul shared the project she developed during the meetup, based on the collision game from the Let's Play handouts
  • Abby Miller shared resources that she developed for her students (step-by-step and Scratch puzzles) and will hopefully share on ScratchEd!
  • Jesse Raymond shared a space-themed project he created that models gravity.

2. For the beginners

After showing various sample projects to demonstrate the possibilities of Scratch creation, we had an hour and a half of hands-on time with Scratch. The suggested activity was to create an interactive collage, but several different paths were explored including trying out the Scratch card activities and checking out the Scratch sample projects that come with Scratch (e.g. Simple Circuits).

If yesterday was your first experience with Scratch (or you want a refresher), here are some other resources that you might want to check out, to support your further explorations with Scratch.

  • Getting started guide - How to make a first Scratch project.
  • Design studio activities - 16 suggestions for design activities, such as making a project that includes the "random" block or making a project that has an orange square and purple circle.
  • Creative computing workshop - This is a sequence of activities for getting started with Scratch. Any feedback on the sequence and activities would be appreciated. How could it be changed to be more useful?

3. Intermediate breakout

Those with more experience followed a few different tracks, but several people got together to explore Scratch's game-making potential, with some people using the Let's Play handouts as a reference and others pursuing their own challenges, such as implementing a version of Pac-Man.

4. Future events

There are lots of ways to keep participating in ScratchEd professional development:

  • Hang out on ScratchEd
  • Come to the monthly meetups - Next month's meetup is a bit different, as it coincides with Scratch Day. Registration for Scratch Day MIT opens at the beginning of May.
  • Attend the monthly webinars - The next webinar is all about computational practices and is taking place on Monday, April 25 at 7pm EST.

Thanks again for attending yesterday's event. We look forward to seeing you at MIT for Scratch Day and on ScratchEd in the interim!


Karen Brennan

Michelle has posted the Show & Tell videos from the meetup --