6.B.1. Shapes in Grades 1-3


Interview with teachers Leslee Minniti (Grade 1), Bronna Silver (Grades 2/3) and Iain Brodie (Grades 7/8), St. Andrews Public School, TDSB, on collaborating to engage Grades 1-3 students with coding for the first time (similar to the Draw Squares with Scratch activity on pages 3-6 of math-coding-club.pdf and this).




Getting ready for coding

  • Grades 1-3 students came into the same classroom.
  • The teacher challenged them to share instructions for walking a square.
  • The teacher purposefully made incorrect assumptions to disrupt student thinking, such as:
    • She interpreted "turn right" to "turn right continuously".

Here's their final plan on the smartboard.


They then modeled this algorithm using Scratch.




With their Grades 7/8 buddies hodling their hands behind their backs, the Grades 1-3 students work for about 60 minutes to accomplish the following:

  • Draw a square
  • Draw multiple squares at different angles
  • Change the pen width and colour
  • Use a random function to create squares of different colours
  • Use sound
  • Define a new block ("draw square")





4.A. Walk a square

Challenge students working in paits to write an algorithm (as set of instructions) that a person could follow to walk a square.


4.B. Walk a square with Scratch

Try the Draw Square program below.

The program needs Flash to run, so it might not be visible if you are using a tablet.

You can also try it here: https://scratch.mit.edu/projects/123748552/#editor


Here are two versions of the code, with identical results.


How are the two versions of the code similar or different?


See the code at https://scratch.mit.edu/projects/123748552/#editor

Edit the code:

  • Change the steps number and notice the effect
  • Change the repeat number and notice the effect
  • Change the turn number and notice the effect
  • Edit the code to draw a triangle
  • Edit the code to draw a hexagon


4.C. Draw a spiral pattern with Scratch

Try the Draw Spirals program below. Or try it here: https://scratch.mit.edu/projects/123749329/#editor


Here are three versions of the code. V1 and V2 produce identical results. V3 has a more colourful result.


How are the three versions of the code similar or different?


See the code at https://scratch.mit.edu/projects/123749329/#editor

Edit the code:

  • Can you draw a spiral pattern with triangles?
  • Can you draw a spirral pattern with pentagons?
  • Use you imagination: what geometric patterns can you create with code