Scratch 2.0 on the Raspberry Pi

Exciting news! On Friday, Raspberry Pi announced the release of an update to the Raspberry Pi operating system, Raspbian, which includes an offline version of Scratch 2.0.

We often get questions from Code Club leaders looking to use this latest version of Scratch offline on the Raspberry Pi, so this update will be welcome to many!

Work on implementing Scratch 2.0 has been in progress for a while, as Simon Long details on the Raspberry Pi blog, and now the team has succeeded: a Scratch 2.0 application is available for the Pi 2 and Pi 3 – you can find it in the Programming section of the updated Raspbian main menu.

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However, the team didn’t stop at providing an offline version of Scratch 2.0 – they have also improved the experience of physical computing on the Pi using Scratch. There is now a custom extension which allows the user to control the Pi’s GPIO pins without difficulty: simply click on “More Blocks”, choose “Add an Extension”, and select “Pi GPIO”. This loads two new blocks, one to read and one to write the state of a GPIO pin.

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The Scratch team at MIT kindly allowed Raspberry Pi to include all the sprites, backdrops, and sounds from the online version of Scratch 2.0, so the cat sprite and its meow noise that we all know and love are present and accounted for. And you can even use the Raspberry Pi Camera Module to create new sprites and backgrounds!

Got questions or want to learn more? Head over to the Raspberry Pi blog.

 

 

Have a go at our Space Diary projects!

At the end of last year, Curved House Kids and author Lucy Hawking launched the second Principia Space Diary programme, a primary science scheme first created in 2015-16 as one of the UK Space Agency-funded education outreach projects supporting Tim Peake’s Principia Space Mission.

To celebrate the launch of the Space Diary, we created some special space-themed projects, which are now available for all our Code Clubs to have a go at on our website.

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Space Body Quiz is a Scratch project where children can create their own space quiz, using facts about their body in space: jumpto.cc/your-body

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Secret Messages is a Python project, teaching children how to make an encryption program to send and receive secret messages with a friend: jumpto.cc/messages

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Space Maze is a Scratch project in which children try to navigate space junk as they return home from the ISS to Earth: rpf.io/spacemaze

If you’ve tried out these projects with your Code Club, we’d love to hear your feedback! Please let us know what you think by emailing us at hello@codeclub.org.uk. If you haven’t tried them yet, why not have a go at the projects with your club?

Projects for Safer Internet Day

Tomorrow is Safer Internet Day, which aims to promote the safe use of digital technology for children and young people. The day offers the opportunity to highlight positive uses of technology, and to explore the role we all play in helping to create a better and safer online community.

At the Raspberry Pi Foundation and Code Club, we’re committed to helping people to learn more about digital making, building a strong and supportive community who use their skills in positive, fun and creative ways.

To celebrate Safer Internet Day in your school, community centre, Code Club, or at home, we’ve created some fun projects that promote the safe and responsible use of technology.

Username Generator

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There are lots of websites and apps that identify you by a username. This username is often visible to others, so it’s important that your username isn’t your real name, and doesn’t include personal information such as your age, year of birth or where you live.

In this project you’ll generate usernames that you can use on websites like Scratch. You’ll be able to save the usernames that you like to a text file, so that you can use them later. You’ll even have the chance to create a profile picture to go with your new username.

Password Generator

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In this project, you’ll learn how to generate random, secure passwords. First, you’ll learn how secure your passwords are, as well as what makes a secure password. You’ll then create a program to generate random passwords, allowing the user to decide how many passwords they want and how long the passwords should be.

Secret Agent Chat

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Our personal data is important and should be kept safe and stored securely if shared online. Many websites use encryption to keep the data they hold private. This project shows you how to use a basic encryption technique, and how unauthorised people may be able to gain access to your encrypted information if you are not careful!

Find out more about Safer Internet Day on their website, which also contains education packs for learners, parents and carers.