Earlier this morning I received an email from a subscriber to the PracticalEdTech.com newsletter. She was looking for suggestions on programming apps. One that came mind immediately is Scratch Jr. Scratch Jr. is based on the popular online Scratch program in which students can learn to program. Scratch Jr for iPad uses the same drag and drop programming principles used in Scratch. On Scratch Jr students can program multimedia stories and games.
To program a story or game on Scratch Jr students select background settings for each frame of the story. Then in each frame students select the actions that they want their characters to take. Students snap programming pieces together to make characters move and talk in their stories and games.
Applications for Education
Scratch offers a great way to introduce students to programming and logic. Scratch Jr for iPad makes it easy to introduce those same concepts to elementary school students.
Check out the ScratchED community for great examples of teachers using Scratch in their classrooms.