Review - Create Your Own Story with SCRATCH

Review - Create Your Own Story with SCRATCH
In this review of Create Your Own Story with SCRATCH by Kevin Wood, you will see how easily the author teaches you to create your own story book in Scratch. This book is one in a series called Project CODE. The colorful illustrations, by Glen McBeth, make it fun to read.

The author starts with a discussion of what a story is, what makes a good story and how Scratch can help you to create your own digital interactive story. After downloading the sample Scratch files, you are ready to follow the author step by step as he creates the story using the Scratch block-based programming language. He starts with a simple story and builds it into an interactive story with several endings, as he adds each new block of code.

Starting with the first sample file, which is the beginning of the book, Wood discusses how the pages (or slides) of the story are created from static text on top of a background graphic. He then takes a look at several other options that you can use in your book to let the reader move through the slides/pages. Finally, he discusses how to switch from using static text and background images to using a text sprite. Creating the text as a sprite allows for a scrolling animation.

Next, Wood discusses how to use Scratch costumes to create animation in Scratch. Costumes are copies of the same sprite that have subtle changes. When played in sequence these images create an animation. He demonstrates how to create a sprite walk cycle to move the character between pages. Then, he shows how to convert this walk cycle into a subroutine that can be used anywhere in the story.

Wood next discusses how to use the Pick Random code block to allow for several endings to the story. He also covers how to use variables and if statements to add interactivity to the story. By giving the reader a list of questions and storing the answers in a variable, the reader can control the story. Finally, Wood combines all that you have learned in to one final example. After that, he discusses how to fix any bugs in your program or script.

Kevin Wood is a technical writer and the author of the Project CODE books. Along with his wife, they have published several children's books.

Index - EdTech In the Classroom

Scratch is a project of the Scratch Foundation, in collaboration with the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at the MIT Media Lab. It is available for free at

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