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Author: Woodcock, Jon
Publisher: DK Children
Year Published: 20.99
ISBN: 978-1465439352
Grades: Grade 4, Grade 5, Grade 6, Grades 7 to 12

Coding Games in Scratch

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With the influx of Makerspaces and Hour of Code into schools, students are learning more about computers and programming than ever before. Woodcock takes a beginner programming online platform, “Scratch”, and makes it easily accessible to young students. Scratch is a wonderful program for children to learn the basics of coding without having to learn HTML or other complex programming languages. The coding is done using coloured blocks of ready-made code. This allows students to focus on the logic of coding, including ‘if-then’ cycles, repeats, and more. Woodcock begins his text with a short introduction to how computer games work and explaining how Scratch works. He then goes on to describe how to program eight different games. The text is clear, concise and precise (perfect for a book about programming!) and the accompanying screenshots give the reader the visual to see what it should actually look like. Directions are clearly numbered and laid out in sequence. Happily, Woodcock shows the reader how to personalize the games, making them their own by adding in their own ideas and images through the  “Hacks and Tweaks”section which is found at the end of every game. An excellent introduction to programming, answering the question of where you take students next after they have done Hour of Code. Consider using along with microcomputers such as Raspberry Pi, or microcontrollers such as Makey Makey and Arduinos
Grades 3 – 12

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