1, 2, 3, code ! - Cycle 2 activities - Lesson 2a.7. Producing the final episode autonomously

Summary

Students work on their own to tell the last episode of their hero's adventure. They cover the key ideas from the entire sequence and finish their program.

Key ideas
(see Conceptual scenario)

"Machines" and "Languages"

  • We can give a machine instructions by using a special language called a programming language, which can be understood by both people and machines.
  • An "algorithm" is a method to resolve a problem
  • A program is an algorithm in a programming language.

“Algorithms”

  • A loop is used to repeat the same action several times.
  • Certain loops are repeated a specific number of times.
  • Basic instructions can be performed one after the others.
  • Instructions can start at the same time if they are triggered by the same event.
  • Certain loops are repeated forever.

Equipment

For the class

  • (Recommended) A video projector system to show the teacher’s tablet screen to the entire class.

For each pair or small group

  • An Android or OS tablet with the Scratch Junior application installed

For each student

  • Handout 21 (this is the last time it will be used)

Duration

1 hour

 

Starting the activity

The teacher tells the students that they can tell the last episode almost however they like with Scratch Junior. There is only one condition: they must use events to coordinate their characters and use loops. The teacher suggests that they try and not be overly ambitious to start with and to add elements to their story if they have time at the end. In particular, any sound recordings should be done last, with students focusing on structuring their programs first.

 

Creating the episode (ideally in pairs)

The students talk in pairs about the essential elements to include in the last episode. Which characters? Which stage? Which events to trigger the characters' actions?

 

Programming the episode

After approval from the teacher, who checks with that the students that their plan is realistic, the students program the last episode. The teacher walks around to all the groups to make sure they are making progress.

The teacher checks that the students remember to link stages 3 and 4.

Here are a few examples of programs that tell the final episode of the story. The selected stage is a beach at sunset (orange colored). The story is a bird that goes to find the magician, who conjures up a cake and sends it to the hero. The hero eats the cake and slowly gets farther away (he returns home).

These programs are already rather complex (only older students will likely manage to produce them without help):

 





 

The initial positions that are compatible with these programs are:

  • Hero: (row 5, column 3)
  • Magician: (row 6, column 17)
  • Bird: (row 12, column 2)
  • Cake: (row 9, column 10)

Teaching note:

  • With Scratch Junior, the positioning, disappearance and scaling of characters is rather slow. The characters will appear differently than desired for a couple seconds when the program is launched and when stages change. The more advanced version, Scratch, will let students in grades four and up achieve a better result.
  • This program can be enhanced with sound messages, sound effects, etc.

 

Conclusion: Class presentation

To conclude the lesson, each group of students shows their final episode to the class. The students talk about the programs they are most proud of or those that were most difficult to figure out. They can also share any difficulties they could not solve and see if the class can help find a solution.

 

Further study

Now that students have learned to program on Scratch Junior, they can use their skills to create other projects during the year, such as animated cards for Christmas, Mother's Day, etc.

 

 


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