Over the past couple weeks of class we have learned how to use coding programs such as Scratch and ETOYS. We learned what code is, how to write code and the endless possibilities that can be made with the different uses of coding. I had no idea how much time and effort went into simple things like taking a character through a maze or making an object touch something and react to it. I have learned that coding has a lot more detail than I would ever think. Now when I look at a game I will be able to picture the amount of hard work actually went into it.
This is a picture I found of a very interesting scratch presentation. I thought it was very interesting that the person who designed this was able to go into so much detail as to have the fish different colors, and the sand with polka dots on it. It is very impressive, and something to work towards! In class we have been working on programming characters to do what we want for example complete a maze, touch a specific spot on the screen and run away, or talk to another character on the screen. We have learned tips and tricks to make a professional looking game. We have also experienced what does not work, and why. We have worked through glitches and the difficulties to create a very awesome game. I am learning that computer programming takes a lot of patience, which I did not realize. I have a lot of respect for those in computer programming as I did not realize just how difficult it is to create a game that is glitch free. I am understanding more in depth the process it takes for a game to be created like 2048 that many people play without thinking much about. I am very glad I am taking this class and am enjoying about computer programming.
We've been working more with Scratch over the past week, designing projects and finding cool tricks and tips so that if the St. John kids want to go above and beyond, we'll be able to teach them. Monday we celebrated International Day of the Girl, and the whole school heard a speech from Sarah Naguib, a CSG alum from the class of '13 who took the OLPC program to a whole new level, raising almost $35,000 to buy 100 laptops to ship to Egypt. Her presentation was inspiring, and it was great to hear how much the work we're doing has an impact all across the globe, from Egypt to Lesotho to the Philippines. I've heard nothing but good things about the trip to St. John and I can't wait to go and get to interact with kids in a more hands-on way and teach them the Scratch skills I've been learning.
This past week in OLPC, we worked more with Scratch, and looked at previous projects to find new ways to create fun games and challenge ourselves at the same time. This year I have been really excited about One Laptop Per Child specifically because I am hopefully going to travel this year and want to retain as much knowledge as I can so that I can pass it on to the kids I'll be teaching. This project is such a great opportunity for all of the girls involved, and it is so nice to know that our work is being put to such good use. Right now I'm feeling very proud of myself for taking something somewhat challenging to me and making it fun. I have never been good with computers, but being in OLPC has taught me so much and made it a lot easier for me to have fun while trying to come up with and put together lessons.
During the school year, students will be blogging about their experiences approximately once a week. Please check back for updates.