It’s no more surprise or entertaining to see kids of all ages to play/work with computers, smart phones and tablets in addition to their high-tech game consoles. Now it is time to take their digital interests to the next level. The same digital technology they just use to play with can help them give a way to express themselves in a way that they like. Young children will love to see how they can control a real and big thing like a computer. When they feel they are in control they will start to develop a relationship with the computer. This fact will change their attitude to seeing a computer as something they can either play or browse or click with.
Intelligent people at Scratch MIT have developed a kid-friendly programming language with which children can build and/or create animations,videos, music, games and stories. This interesting and easy programming interface provides kids to work on a sprite – a movable object that moves – with graphical blocks of instructions. These blocks of instructions snap together like bricks in Lego toys. The graphical interface, commands in colors and a sprite that can move, dance, run, talk and sing are just right toys for kids to play and “tinker” with. Their already vivid imagination and creativity can literally fly on the Scratch Stage.
This Initial Learning Environment (ILE) of Scratch provides an accessible programming language that is tinkerable. That means it is easy enough for kids as small as 7 -8 years of age to understand how to write a computer program. It eliminates the frustrating challenges of learning a real, “high level language”. The graphical interface gives “what-you-see-what-you-get” kind of feelings which can easily encourage younger audience to try more and do some more advanced things.
Once kids start tinkering on Scratch, soon they will pick up an idea to express themselves. This is a great platform for kids to learn complex concept of computational thinking in a fun, playful and creative way.