Couldn’t agree more!
Gotta add: this sounds great but DON’T ignore the Research component! It’s as important as the programming. So are Teamwork/Team Spirit, which also make it more fun.
Phil Smith III
Virginia State Judge Advisor, 2007, 2008
Judge Advisor, Northern Virginia Regional tournaments, 2006
Division 1 Judge Advisor, Virginia State tournament, 2006
Coach, The Capital Girls, Oak Hill (retired)
Team 1900 (2002)
Team 2497 (2003)
Team 2355 (2004)
Team 1945 (2005)
Scratch is great, especially if you have an elementary school team – 4th & 5th graders. It is written for that age group. Even my daughter, who is six loved doing the Scratch programming cards.
Our elementary school is starting an FLL team for the first time. Because we have more applicants than team spots, we will also have a club for all who applied, which will meet more leisurely after tournaments are over. However, to pick the children for the team, I ran a summer fun programming challenge to teach the kids the concept of programming. The challenge took place all via email over the summer and we used Scratch. Weekly assignments I sent out stepped them through the Fish project at redware.com - http://www.redware.com/scratch/fish.html. I tested them on my 9 year old son first before I emailed them out. Then, I gave them a few bonus projects along the way. They seem to have a lot of fun. Many of them seemed “Wow’d” that they could write something like that all by themselves. All done through email. I get to meet most of them on Wednesday at our first FLL meeting. It is amazing what kids can do!