Scratch Interface - Getting Started
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Scratch Interface - Getting Started

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- SCRATCH - Getting Started

SCRATCH is a new programming language that makes it easy to create interactive stories, games, and animations - and share your creations with others on the Web.

This module provides an overview of the SCRATCH software. SCRATCH was developed by the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at the MIT Media Lab, with financial support from the National Science Foundation, Microsoft, Intel Foundation, Nokia, and the MIT Media Lab research consortia.

SCRATCH Projects

SCRATCH projects are made up of objects called sprites. You can change how a sprite looks by giving it a different costume. You can make a sprite look like a person or a train or a butterfly or anything else.

You can use any image as a costume: you can draw an image in the Paint Editor, import an image from your hard disk, or drag in an image from a Web site.

You can give instructions to a sprite, telling it to move or play music or react to other sprites. To tell a sprite what to do, you snap together graphic blocks into stacks, called scripts. When you click on a script, SCRATCH runs the blocks from the top of the script to the bottom.

BLOCKS PALETTE
Blocks for
programming
your sprites.
LANGUAGE
SAVE
SHARE
SPRITE ROTATION STYLE
CURRENT SPRITE INFO
TABS
Edit Scripts
costumes. or sounds.
TOOLBAR
VIEW MODE
Change to large or small stage view
PRESENTATION MODE
Present your project,
-GREEN FLAG
A way to start scripts.
STOP SIGN
Stops all scripts.
STAGE
Where your SCRATCH
creations come to We.
MOUSE X-Y DISPLAY
Shows location of cursor.
-NEW SPRITE BUTTONS
Create a new character or
object for your project.
-SPRITE LIST
Thumbnails of all your
sprites. Click to select and
edit a sprite.
SCRIPTS AREA
Drag blocks in, snap them
together into scripts.

SCRATCH interface - Stage

The Stage is where you see your stories, games, and animations come to life. Sprites move and interact with one another on the Stage.

The Stage is 480 units wide and 360 units tall. It is divided into an x-y grid. The middle of the Stage has an x-coordinate of 0 and a y-coordinate of 0.

SCRATCH interface - Stage

To find out x-y positions on the Stage, move the mouse (cursor) around and look at the mouse x-y display just below the Stage

Click the Presentation Mode button when you want to present your project. To exit Presentation Mode, press the Esc key.

Click the View Mode buttons to switch between small and large stage view. You can use small stage view to display SCRATCH on small screens or to expand the Scripts Area.

SCRATCH interface - New Sprites

When you start a new SCRATCH project, it begins with a single cat sprite.
To create new sprites, click on these buttons

Paint your own costume for a new sprite using the Paint Editor.

Select a costume for a new sprite or import an entire sprite.

Get a surprise sprite.

If you want to delete a sprite, select the scissors from the Toolbar and click on the sprite. Or right-click on the sprite and select delete from the pop-up menu.

To make a sprite that looks like part of the Stage background, right-click the Stage and select grab screen region for new sprite.

SCRATCH interface - Sprite list

The Sprite List displays thumbnails for all sprites in a project. The name of each sprite appears below its thumbnail.

To see and edit a sprite's scripts, costumes, and sounds, click on the sprite's thumbnail in the Sprite List or double-click on the sprite itself on the Stage. (The selected sprite is highlighted and outlined in blue in the Sprite List.)

To show, export, duplicate, or delete a sprite, right-click on the sprite's thumbnail in the Sprite List. To show a sprite that is off the Stage or hidden, Shift+click on the sprite's thumbnail in the Sprite List - this will bring the sprite to the middle of the Stage and show it. You can rearrange the sprites in the Sprite List by dragging the thumbnails.

Just as a sprite can change its appearance by switching costumes, the Stage can change its appearance by switching backgrounds. To see and edit the scripts, backgrounds, and sounds associated with the Stage, click on the Stage icon at the left of the Sprite List.

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