This weeks activities included the use of many of the scripts and palette blocks I have engaged with over the last three weeks. Once again I changed the background, designed a paddle and created sprites for use within the game. However more of the scripts in the motion palette were used this week including direction as well as the combination of motion and operators scripts were used for directing the ball sprite. The operator scripts were a new tool this week however I must admit I don’t really understand at this point how I would use them.
The sensing palette was implemented to control the movement of the ball, which initially was controlled by the mouse and then after changing the sequence the control was changed to the keyboard. A further introduction this week was the use of variables to determine the score and speed at which the ball sprite moved. The use of the variables scripts was very easy. All that is required is the typing of the variable you would like to add and that is it the program adds that variable.
Overall this weeks activity still utilised similar learning skills such as creative thinking skills, problem solving skills and collaborative working in the challenge however an important addition was the incorporation of the variable. As with all learning the consideration of variables is evident and this is highlighted in the Draft Australian Curriculum: Technologies, digital technologies subject where students are required to plan, design, create and evaluate their solution. The inclusion of the variable aspect allows students to evaluate the effectiveness of their game when different variables are at play.
Through remixing and changing the parameters of the game students learn valuable design and life skills. The Scratch program could be used in the classroom to teach students about variables, the process of design, how to collaborate and how to find solutions to fix problems and improve the outcome of the game.
Here is a link to the Scratch home page where you can download it and try it yourself.http://scratch.mit.edu/