Development of computational thinking concepts in scratch programming

Siu Cheung KONG, Ming LAI, Ka Yuk Cora SIU

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapters

Abstract

Young learners can use block-based programming environments to develop their computational thinking (CT), but as previous studies suggest, students' CT concepts development should not be taken for granted. This paper presents a study of the development of CT concepts of repetition, conditionals, and sequences in senior primary school students through an interest-driven curriculum in a four-day Scratch programming summer camp. The participants were 30 students, 17 boys and 13 girls, who had just finished grade 4. A mixed methods design was used, with quantitative data to examine the effectiveness of the curriculum in developing students' CT concepts and qualitative data to explore the students' learning when creating their final projects. Based on the pre- and post-test results of a CT concepts test, significant improvements were found for each of the concepts, with a particularly large effect size on repetition. This was in line with the design of the curriculum, which placed slightly more emphasis on repetition. An analysis of the students' final projects indicated that the girls' groups were more likely to choose the theme of storytelling over creating a card. In general, the students tended to use the concepts and features that were taught more in the curriculum, and were able to use them in a creative way in their final projects. Copyright © ICCE 2020 - 28th International Conference on Computers in Education, Proceedings. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationICCE 2020 - 28th International Conference on Computers in Education Conference proceedings
EditorsHyo-Jeong SO, Ma. Mercedes RODRIGO, Jon MASON, Antonija MITROVIC
Place of PublicationTaoyuan County
PublisherAsia-Pacific Society for Computers in Education
Pages652-657
VolumeI
ISBN (Electronic)9789869721455
Publication statusPublished - 23 Nov 2020

Citation

Kong, S.-C., Lai, M., & Siu, C. K.-Y. (2020). Development of computational thinking concepts in scratch programming. In H.-J. So, M. M. Rodrigo, J. Mason, & A. Mitrovic (Eds.), ICCE 2020 - 28th International Conference on Computers in Education Conference proceedings (Vol. I, pp. 652-657). Taoyuan County: Asia-Pacific Society for Computers in Education.

Keywords

  • Computational thinking concepts
  • Concept development
  • Primary school students
  • Project outcomes
  • Scratch programming

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