EdScratch combines the ease of drag-and-drop programming with powerful functionality and versatility. The result is a robot programming language that is easy to learn and offers a robust platform for computer science education. And just like all of our robot programming languages, you can use EdScratch for free!
A bit about EdScratch
If you are familiar with MIT’s Scratch programming language, the look and feel of EdScratch will likely seem very familiar to you. EdScratch was developed using the Scratch Blocks code base developed by the MIT Media Lab from the Blockly code base developed by Google. Just like Scratch, EdScratch is a vertical block-based language which allows you to drag-and-drop blocks together to make a program. Designed specifically for use with Edison robots, EdScratch is a robotics programming language that is simple to use, lots of fun, and lets you tap into Edison’s capabilities in exciting ways.
The online EdScratch programming environment is designed to deliver meaningful computer science education through an easy-to-use interface. EdScratch’s intuitive layout and the simplicity of block-based coding makes EdScratch an ideal programming language for students aged 10 and up. Helpful features, like the built-in bug box, make the transition to using more complex programming structures approachable even with no prior coding experience. As students gain confidence in coding, they can do even more by controlling inputs, manipulating data, and creating and utilising variables, making EdScratch a perfect platform to use Edison’s features in engaging, creative ways.
All Version 2.0 Edison robots are fully compatible with EdScratch.
I have Version 1 Edison robots. Can I use EdScratch?As a general rule, you can use Version 1 Edison robots which have the latest firmware update with EdScratch, but there are a few limitations, especially when it comes to Edison’s motor outputs. When using blocks from the ‘Drive’ category in EdScratch with Version 1 robots, only use ‘seconds’ as the distance units input parameter. Using ‘cm’, ‘inch’, or ‘degrees’ as the distance units input parameter will not work with Version 1 robots and can result in some bizarre behaviour from the robot. Likewise, it is recommended that you avoid using the sensing and event blocks related to ‘drive strain’ with Version 1 robots as these blocks can cause the robots to behave erratically.
What’s the reason behind these limitations? The key cause has to do with some physical differences between Version 1 Edison robots and V2.0 Edison robots. Edison V2.0 robots have wheel encoders which allow the robots to travel specific distances at exact speeds. These encoders enable the robots to use distance units other than time, including centimetres, inches and degrees. Version 1 Edison robots do not have encoders and therefore are not capable of the precision driving required to use these other inputs.
EdScratch in education
In developing EdScratch, we wanted to make sure that EdScratch could be a tool that both educators and students would love. To help you get the most out of EdScratch, we’ve developed a range of free, downloadable educational resources including student activities, project ideas and a teacher’s guide.
The free EdScratch Lesson Plans Set includes a complete curriculum for teaching computational thinking and computer science using EdScratch and the Edison robot. The lesson activities and project ideas in the set are organised into six units beginning with an initial preparatory unit and culminating in an open-ended project-based unit. Designed for flexible use, you can easily choose just the activities that suit your interests or teach the entire curriculum!
The student set of the EdScratch lesson activities contains worksheets and activity sheets designed for independent use by students in Year 5 (10-11 years old) and above. With 98 activity options organised into six units, the student set contains a mix of structured and open-ended activities that introduce key concepts and learning objectives while engaging students in an active exploration of Edison and EdScratch. The complementary teaching guide offers teachers and instructors overviews, delivery recommendations and other supporting information for the EdScratch lesson activities to help make teaching EdScratch easy and fun.
We’ve also created a series of free video tutorials organised around the units in the EdScratch lesson plans. Each tutorial video in the series examines new elements in the EdScratch environment and the related computer science concepts from the lessons.
Want to know more?
You can learn more about EdScratch on the EdScratch page on our website, including a full list of FAQs and troubleshooting help.
What can you make with EdScratch? Send us your ideas, pics and videos at firstname.lastname@example.org or add them to the online community of Edison awesomeness on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube.
EdScratch is developed by Microbric Pty Ltd using open source software created and maintained by the Scratch Foundation. The Scratch Foundation does not sponsor, endorse, or authorize this content. See scratch.mit.edu for more information.