Learning to code has become as important as learning to read and write alphabets and words. As parents, we give them basic reading and writing lessons. But then as parents how are we going to teach our 8 and 10-year-old coding. Don’t worry…the answer lies in Scratch.
Scratch is a project developed and managed by the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at the MIT Media Lab and its free of cost. Scratch is so amazing that children as young as 8 and 9 can create their own interactive stories, games, and animations and then share their creations on the Web. To help these kids there exists vibrant online communities. It is so good that not only kids, even adults are extensively using them. If the numbers are to be believed millions of people around the world from homes, schools and community centers use Scratch to create their own projects.
What is Scratch?
Scratch is a programming language and it makes it easy for kids and adults alike to create interactive art, stories, simulations, and games. The best part is child become a creator on the first day itself and with new tricks learned they can make something completely innovative. Since it gives the option for creators to share the work with like-minded people, it opens up the platform to share thoughts and ideas and helps creators to make it really big. According to the Scratch team, it gives children a platform to nurture creativity and thinking.
Any child in the age group of 8 to 16 can try out Scratch. A simplified version of Scratch called ScratchJr is available for children in the age group of 5 to 7. There is even ScratchJr Family Days community group wherein, parents, grandparents, siblings, extended family members, and children work together to create projects in ScratchJr.
Can we use Scratch offline too ?
The Scratch Desktop editor is available which allows children to create Scratch projects without an internet connection. To do this download Scratch Desktop from the website.
Is Scratch useful or will it be like all available addictive games ?
Scratch is not like playing a mindless game, but it gives children an option to try out their creativity and thinking. It gives them a platform to connect and collaborate with people far and wide. Also creating projects in Scratch also helps students to develop a deeper understanding of digital technology. Scratch is not just for kids who love computers, but for all in the same way like an art class is not just for kids who love arts, but for all as it gives their mind a canvas to think without any limitations.
What is Scratch 3.0?
Scratch 3.0, the latest one, was launched on January 2, 2019. It includes lots of new sprites (Every Scratch program is made up of sprites and the instructions that control them), a totally new sound editor, and many new programming blocks. Scratch 3 can be used from a Tablet too. Also, it’s available in 40 plus languages.