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Here is a good resource for

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Here is a good resource for teachers wanting to incorporate Scratch into their teaching, learning: http://www.scratchprogramming.org

K-8 Technology Teacher in Philadelphia, PA

Thanks for sharing!

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Thanks, Debbie, for sharing the link. Looks promising. I will definitely share with my network!

middle school technology teacher

I have used RobotProg with my

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I have used RobotProg with my middle school students. They can learn about sequencing, conditional statements, loops, etc.
http://www.softpedia.com/get/Others/Home-Education/RobotProg.shtml

Fifth grade teacher from Columbus, Ohio

Thank you for the

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Thank you for the suggestions. I am going to explore this program more and plan to share it with my team. I feel strongly that schools should be doing more to further student interest in technology-especially in the area of programming.

K-8 Technology Teacher in Philadelphia, PA

Jodi, I teach Scratch to

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Jodi,

I teach Scratch to 3rd-7th graders using the Scratch Cards and a bit of direct instruction followed by free time to explore and build their own project according to criteria I set forth (your project has to have a moving sprite, more than one sprite, a background and a story or theme). I also have the students do a written description of their program (this forces them to think about how it works). Check out the Scratch Curriculum, too.

http://scratched.media.mit.edu/resources/scratch-curriculum-guide-draft

Fifth grade teacher from Columbus, Ohio

Programming Ideas for elementary students

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Your blog brought up some points I had not thought of before. If schools continue to drop computer science programs, the interest and knowledge needed for future programmers will be lacking. I have never used any programming tools myself with my students, but I downloaded and worked with Scratch. I thought the math components and programming language would be well received by my students. Has anyone had success working with introductory programming in late elementary school grades? If so, suggestions of how to implement a program would be appreciated.

K-8 Technology Teacher in Philadelphia, PA

Thanks so much, Lynn!

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I can't wait to check out the Pinterest board and the website!

K-8 Technology Teacher in Philadelphia, PA

Thanks Paul!

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Great resources. I definitely see the power of tying writing skills to programming. One of the requirements of my final assessment of students' Scratch projects is that they describe what's going on in the project. This requires them to write logically and descriptively for a real purpose.

co-founder Teaching Kids Programming

FREE resources to introduce middle-school aged kdis to programmi

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We have been teaching for 5 years around the US and internationally and have recently joined the US non-profit (MONA Foundation) as a new project. We write courseware which you can use, and share our teaching methods (via written info and YouTube videos) at www.TeachingKidsProgramming.org. Our courseware is targeted for middle-school aged kids (10+). Enjoy! - Also to see the 'face of programming' check out my Pinterest board with pictures from our events world-wide - http://pinterest.com/lynnlangit/teaching-kids-programming/

Senior Program Associate, National Writing Project

NWP Resources

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Great post, Mary Beth. I'm glad you attended the Hack Jam at Educon. Just wanted to mention that my org, the National Writing Project (www.nwp.org), is working with the folks at Mozilla's Hackasaurus to sponsor Hack Jams like the one we put on at Educon. Wish I could've been there.

In case your readers are interested, we have a bunch of resources about Hackasaurus at our Digital Is (digitalis.nwp.org) website. A great one, for instance, is this piece: My First HackJam: Five Lessons on Powerful Learning (http://digitalis.nwp.org/site-blog/my-first-hackjam-5-lessons-powerful-l...)

A number of teachers have also written at Digital Is about Scratch and other programming environments like GameStar Mechanic. One person in particular who's got a lot of great resources up at the site is Kevin Hodgson (@dogtrax). Here's a link to his resource collection: http://digitalis.nwp.org/community/resource/19

Again, thanks, Mary Beth, for pushing us towards thinking about student agency through coding. I would argue that coding not only promotes development of traditional literacies (game narrative is one avenue, for example), but that coding itself is a powerful literacy practice.

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