A. Instruction - 7.7
B. Design - 8.5
C. Engagement - 8.3
Tynker: An App for Computer Programming
Summary : How Good of a Computer Programmer Are You?
Tynker supports users in developing their computer-programming skills. After launching the app, users can choose the “Create” or “Play” mode. In the “Create” mode, users can choose to modify a pre-existing scene or create their own scene using the “+” and “wrench” buttons on the top right of the screen. The “+” button allows users to select the background, characters, and props to include in the scene. The “wrench” button allows users to add movement to their characters by dragging commands from the left-side menu into the center and then connecting them. To test their scene, users must tap the “play” button, which will automatically take users from the coding screen to the scene screen. Also, users can adjust where the characters and props are on the scene screen by tapping and dragging them before tapping the “play” button. After creating or modifying a scene, Tynker automatically saves it so users can return to it at a later date. In the “Play” mode, users are presented with the different game-like scenarios that are divided into levels, and they must enter the correct computer-programming code to complete each level.
- Teachers can give students a scenario and have them create a scene that reflects it. For example, teachers can give students a scenario such as: “A human and an alien are in outer space and moving away from each other. Create that scene using this app.” or “A penguin and an alligator are walking past each other in a city. Create that scene using this app.” After receiving their scene, students will have to make it using this app and show their teacher for grading.
- Teachers can have a class contest to see which student can create the most complicated but well-designed scene. Teachers can give students time in class to create their scenes and, when ready, each student displays his or her iPad around the room with his or her scene showing. Additionally, students can attach a sticky note to their iPad with their scene’s title and a brief explanation of it. Students can then walk around the room and view their classmates’ different scenes. Finally, students can vote for their favorite scene and compose a short rationale explaining why they voted for it.
- To practice their coding before making their own scene, teachers can require students to complete a game series in the “Play” option of this app. By practicing their coding, students will be better prepared to make their scenes in the “Create” option.
- To prepare them for coding in this app, students can learn and practice basic coding skills using the Hopscotch, Daisy the Dinosaur, or Lightbot One Hour Coding apps. Learning coding skills in those apps will support students when they design their own scenes in this app.
|A2. 21st Century Skills|
|A3. Conn. to Future Learning|
|A5. Feedback to Teacher|
|A6. Level of Material|
|A7. Cooperative Learning|
|A8. Accom. of Individual Diff.|
|B1. Ability to Save Progress|
|B2. Platform Integration|
|B3. Screen Design|
|B4. Ease of Use|
|B6. Goal Orientation|
|B7. Information Presentation|
|B8. Media Integration|
|C1. Learner Control|