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how can students "submit" answers to exercises

« Teaching with Scratch
5 replies [Last post]
Member
 I will be teaching Scratch, and I would like to do it mostly in a "problem set" format where the kids are working through a set of exercises that I give them. The answers to the exercises will generally be one or more blocks of Scratch code. Ideally I would like something like the backpack, but in a more flexible format. Ideally I'd like to create a problem set "document", and students would read the problems in the document, solve the problems using Scratch, and then drag the code block(s) used in the solution (which would generally be blocks of script for a single sprite) *into* the document. Then the teacher could review the solutions, and also the kids could use their prior solutions by dragging code back out of the document when they are working on future exercises.

My understanding is that the only way I could do something like this with the Scratch infrastructure as it stands is perhaps to have the students set up a studio and create a Scratch project in the studio for each exercise in the problem set. Or for very short exercises they could put the answers to several exercises in a single Scratch project.

My fallback alternative is to create the problem set as a google doc, and as students complete the exercises they would take screen shots of the Scratch screen showing the code blocks, and paste these screen shots into the doc (which is shared with the teacher). That's pretty ugly, but it would work.

I'm just wondering if others have come up with a better solution for this type of thing. From my review of the existing topics in this discussion, I didn't see anything.
 
Replies
Member
 I have students submit their finished projects via google form, but that's better for bigger stuff than what you describe.

I suppose you could create a "starter" project for each problem, and have the kids remix it? Then to review them, you simply look at the remix tree.
Member
 I've got a high-tech and a low-tech solution for you.  On the high-tech side, you could create a thread on the Scratch discussion forums (perhaps in the Collaboration thread), where they can take advantage of the block plugin to type out their commands and have them rendered as Scratch blocks.

The low-tech solution would be to give them a worksheet or index card on which they would hand-draw/write their block solution.  This may actually be more authentic to the professional programming world where paper-prototyping is a longheld practice.  You could even tie it in to Scratch Cards, so students may share their solutions with each other.

However the easiest option I can imagine is having them take a screen capture (this blog entry shares how to capture just a portion of the screen on both Mac and PC so they could just show the blocks vs. full screen) and paste it into your assignment in Edmodo so you can scan them all quickly and even provide feedback or grade them within Edmodo.  

For schools not using Edmodo a shared Google Doc where all students paste their solution could work in a similar manner.
Member
 Thanks for the tips. I did not know about the scratch API. I see that the 2.0 API isn't quite ready for prime time, but eventually I think using the API will give me what I need in the most direct way.

Member
For students to "submit" or "share" their work, I have created Studios for separate "challenges", as well as had students share the links to their projects on a class or camp Edmodo page.

If you just want to "see inside", students could take a screen shot of their code and put several projects in one document.
Member
 Thanks.

randomness