Project Management from Design to Showcase
This is the title of my Scratch @ MIT 2018 Conference workshop coming up this Saturday. I’m excited and honored to be given the opportunity to share some of my experience working with students to create the original Scratch projects, some of which I have written about in this blog.
Managing a class (or club) of students working on individual Scratch projects is complicated. They have big, creative ideas for their projects. They want multiple levels, gravity, complicated animation, and character interactions in their very first programmed game. We, on the other hand, need these projects done on schedule, for the parent showcase or before grades close. This is project management. How can we, as educators, honor student creativity and voice while dealing with the practical realities of limited time and guidance?
In this session, we will look at elementary student game design documents and find ways to support the conversion of these documents into a working, Scratch-coded final product. Participants will work in pairs or small groups with actual game design documents from my 4th grade Code Club members. They will discuss and interpret what the student envisions and develop a plan to help the student be successful. A formal plan will help gauge if the student is on target to finish on time.
We will discuss issues that come up during different stages of the process such as helping students communicate their ideas about their project, and think programmatically. We will discuss different ways to code animation, how to find resources, and dealing with student expectations. We will talk about facilitating students working in pairs, time management, and debugging.
(This is my original wording and may differ from the conference program)
Title: Project Management from Design to Showcase
Date: Saturday, July 28
Time: 11:00a – 12:00p
Room: E15-207 (Wiesner Room)
When I finished writing the description last winter, I was in high spirits because it sounded like a workshop I would want to attend. I’m hoping to facilitate interesting discussions centered around supporting students and their creativity.
I’ve gathered the student design documents I want to share and am putting the final touches on my presentation. I’ll share everything here in a post before the workshop on Saturday. For now, here is the current version of the design document I use with my 4th-grade Code Club students.