Session 107: Coding: From the Virtual to the Physical World

Date:Wednesday, June 19, 2019- Thursday, June 20, 2019

Location: South Fayette Intermediate School

Grades: 3-8

Facilitator: Shad Wachter, Intermediate School STEAM Facilitator, South Fayette

At South Fayette School District we believe computational thinking is the new literacy; therefore we have introduced a vertically aligned K-12 computer programming initiative. Scratch block-based programming language is our foundation. Scratch is so powerful in teaching computer programming concepts and practices that it is used for the first two weeks in the Introduction to Computer Programming course at Harvard University. This inspired learning session will help you get started. Here you will learn the concepts and practices of computational thinking and dispositions of good problem-solvers (Habits of Mind) while learning to code using Scratch programming language. In addition, you will use computer programming to create interactive stories and games.  But wait, there’s more! You will explore the new Scratch 3.0 and will add extensions to Scratch using motors and sensors, to program robots to move. You will see how block based programming through Scratch can be a springboard to other block based programs like BlocksCAD, Sphero, and Snap. Most importantly, during this session you will learn to build collaborative projects to connect to other schools and discuss ideas for developing family programming nights for your families as you implement what you’ve learned.


  • A plan of action for implementing Scratch programming into your classes.

  • Testing and Debugging activities to challenge your students.

  • Strategies for connecting block based coding to programs and extensions beyond Scratch.