The Friday late afternoon Ignite Session at the 2018 Scratch Conference at MIT was a happy, lively, and informative affair. The audience, which of course contains all the Ignite presenters as well as curious others, was receptive and responsive. Lisa, our curator of this session, had the perfect light-but-ruthless (think USA version of Irish Mammy – Irish Mom perhaps?) touch that kept things ticking along, and the format of a series of short sharp 5 minute presentations followed by Q&A made for an engaging and learnful hour for everyone present.
Richard Millwood and I, on behalf of our colleagues Pamela Cowan, Elizabeth Oldham, Nina Bresnihan, Glenn Strong, and Lisa Hegarty, presented the work of the CTwins project, a year long Google funded computational thinking (CT) collaboration between Irish teachers working on Scratch in cross border pairs (‘Twins’). Our project aimed to increase teacher confidence through blended paired programming practice, leveraging the remix facility in Scratch to build in cooperative learning principles. It isn’t easy to fit a year’s work into a 5 minute space, so we just sped thru the headlines, doing out best to make the central threads clear.
Ignite is a rollercoaster format like Pecha Kucha, with 20 slides each auto advancing after 15 seconds – hence our use of PowerPoint (does anyone know how to autoadvance in Google slides?) for the slide deck, which is here. The questions from the audience were insightful – the time was too short for in-depth discussion so we pointed folk to the CTwins work-in-progress webspace here.
Thanks for John Hegarty and Claude Terosier for catching and sharing some of the lighter moments:
Many thanks to all who made this the happiest conference hour of #ScratchMIT2018 – those who attended, Lisa our convenor, and co-presenters Chris, Claude, Ingrid, Janet, Natalie, Leanna, Bernat, Jens, John, Rina, Angela, Lucia, and Richard.