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2. CS First and Scratch Overview


Welcome to the computer science club Google CS First! I’m KaMar. In this video, I’ll introduce you to the CS First website and the programming language Scratch, then you’ll get started on today’s activity. In CS First, you'll learn about the many ways computer science, or CS, is used. CS borrows from other fields, like engineering, psychology, and art to solve problems and create programs. A computer scientist might work on a challenging problem like recognizing the objects in an image, or take existing solutions and apply them in a creative way, like designing a social media app that filters users’ images. By learning computer science, you’ll gain a skill that can improve the lives of those around you, and you’ll begin to understand how computer programs work.

To create programs in this club you’ll watch videos on the CS First website. For each activity, videos will guide you through building a project in Scratch.

Scratch is a computer programming language. Programming languages are instructions that the computer follows. You can use the Scratch programming language to build projects that entertain friends, tell stories, and play music-- you can even use Scratch to make interactive projects for school. At the start of each club, go to CS First website, and watch the first video for the activity. It will explain the project you will build and provide a few steps to get you started. In most cases, the first video will ask you to open either a starter project or a new Scratch project.

After you watch a video, you’ll complete the steps on your own in Scratch. Then, click the CS First tab at the top of your browser, and click the green “next” arrow to move on to the next video. This is Scratch’s project editor. It is where you will create, or code, your projects. This is a sprite-- a character or object you can program. It is located on the stage. This is the blocks palette. It contains blocks, or code, that you will use to create instructions for the sprite or the stage.

To place blocks in your project, click and drag them into the project editor. Click a block to "run" it, which means to make the computer carry out that block's instructions.

For example, when you click the “move 10 steps” block, the sprite moves forward 10 steps. As you place blocks in your project, snap them together to create a block stack. The computer runs the blocks in order from top to bottom. Once your program contains several blocks, either click on the stack to run them, or add a block like, “When flag clicked” to start the code.

Add more programmable sprites to your project by clicking the ‘choose sprite from library’ button.

Each sprite can have its own code.

You can further customize your sprites using the paint editor.

There are additional libraries for backdrops and sounds.

Once you’ve finished a project, share it with millions of other Scratch users by clicking ‘share.’ Then, anyone who visits your URL can see your project. Now that you have a basic understanding of Scratch and CS First, it’s time to start coding! Click the green arrow below this video to move on!

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