Featured Project: Scratch Programming

GE Girls Scratch Programming

Why code?

Code is everywhere. It’s in things you use every day. Your phone uses code. It’s in cars, and in some cases it’s driving the car! The appliances in our homes run code that allows us to access them from anywhere using the Internet. Now we can lock our doors or turn the lights off if we forget to do it before we leave home. In school, teachers can use software to project a lesson on a white board or screen and students can interact with the lesson in fun ways.

All of these amazing things require code.

And that means that we need more and more people who know how to create code. Many companies, including GE, are committed to encouraging girls and women to fill these roles. But even if you’re not interested in coding as a career, it’s helpful to know a little bit about how it works so that you can relate to new technology and use it to your advantage. This project and the Scratch programming language is a great way to learn!

What is Scratch?

Scratch is a programming language developed by MIT to help kids learn how to code. Scratch is free and all you need to use it is a web browser. You can create fun interactive stories and games using Scratch. Then, if you want to, you can share your code with the online community of other Scratch programmers, known as Scratchers.

To try Scratch and see what it’s all about, start here.

The Project

The project is simple…learn about coding by creating something using Scratch.

If you are brand new to coding you can look at the Scratch Starter Projects to get project ideas and tips on how to write your program. When you’re ready for the next challenge, it’s time to come up with your own idea and design the code.

Some ways to organize your project…

  1. Decide what type of project you want to create – a game, interactive art, a story, etc.
  2. Break your project idea up into smaller parts that you can focus on finishing one at a time. For example if your project is a story, the pieces might be the individual scenes in the story.
  3. Think about the details…colors, background image, motion, characters, music…these details will give your finished project polish.
  4. Code and test the first part of your project. Make small changes until you’re happy with the result.
  5. Then move onto the next part.
  6. When you have a finished project that you’re happy with, consider sharing it with the on-line Scratch community.

And most importantly have fun learning something new and expressing your creativity through code!