Scratch Mathematics Projects

My personal favourite use of Scratch is to demonstrate relationships between angles and polygons which I have written on before.

Investigating more projects on Scratch I found What’s My Number? which could make an interesting starter problem. Why can one always guess in 7 tries or less?

What's My Number project by GyroscopeBill

What’s My Number project by GyroscopeBill

(See Guess My Number (Birmingham Grid for Learning) – an alternative version of the game.)

Perhaps try Divisibility Dash from  jgordon510 and practise your knowledge of divisibility.

Quadratic Equation solverFor those who wish to learn more about Scratch syntax then looking at the code for a project such as this quadratic equation solver by proanimator is helpful. Select See Inside to see the code. If you create an account (free) you can save a copy to your own account. This code could easily be adapted as it offers the means to input some variables, perform calculations and display the results. Looking at code already written can be a great way to learn syntax – it’s certainly something I have done when learning to write Excel macros.

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Coding Christmas

From Google check their Made With Code initiative. Note that Google’s Blockly is being used for the code.

See also: More projects 

I agree with Simon Singh’s sentiments that Coding / Computing should be a separate and optional GCSE; I think using resources such as Scratch we can illustrate some concepts well and help students understand them; polygons and angles is a particularly good example of this and one I have written on before.

For some rather more advanced coding, there’s a rather nice Christmas tree generator here; select Auto Generate and sit back and admire the tree! Note that for any Scratch project you can ‘look inside’ and see the coding – a good way to learn more syntax.

Scratch project by vidarfw02

Scratch project by vidarfw02

 

Scratch

Scratch, from MIT is object-oriented programming language which is very easy to get started with as there is now a new release of the platform availble entirely in a browser; no program downloads are required. The interface is intuitive and easy to use; extensive help is available including a very clear Getting Started Guide and a set of Scratch Cards with clear instructions which will help you learn new Scratch code. Note the Scratch For Educators section.

As you can see from the sprite’s path the above program continues as follows:

Scratch square part 2

Now that’s not a very efficient program! Scratch is a great way to learn programming as well as doing some Maths! We could look at external angles of polygons for example and show how to repeat a set of instructions.

Polygons - external angles

Scratch – drawing an octagon

We could add some sound, change the pen colour or shade, learn about variables and generally have some fun!

Scratch Hmm...

Polygons - external angles version 3

Click the image then ‘See Inside’ at the top of the screen.

Try experimenting with this program which uses variables for the number of lines to draw and the angle to turn through. You will need to sign up to Scratch which is very easy and free.

It strikes me that Scratch could be used for many topics, bearings included.

Stephen Quinn’s dissertation is an investigation into using Scratch to teach KS3 Mathematics and has many ideas as well as useful information on Scratch.

Apps: Scratch Junior for iPad (for young children age 5 to 7)