Hopscotch Programming

Coding and programming probably seems intimidating to most people and it definitely was to me, especially since I don’t have a strong background in computers, but the iPad app Hopscotch made it simple. Hopscotch is a coding game for kids. It allows kids to create a simple code. They are giving options of little characters to choose from and the kids can make them do whatever they want. This program introduces kids, and adults, to coding in a friendly, simple environment and teaches them that coding isn’t as hard as everyone makes it seem. Even I could create something on Hopscotch. I made three of the characters make three different sized triangles around my name (shown below).

hopscotch code

How did I do this? Well, it was actually pretty easy, much easier than I was expecting. All of the characters do the same basic thing, but they have variations in distances to get different sized triangles. To start off by setting the line width and color. Then I had to set a different speed for each character so they’d finish their triangles and get to the opposite side at the same time. I also had to make them move a specific distance before they started making their trail so all of the triangles would  be vertically centered.

Next, I had to tell them to make the triangles. I started with a container which told it to leave a trail for whatever was inside the container (the triangle). The pattern for the triangle was side angle side angle side. I didn’t need to tell it to make a third turn because the first and third sides connected to form the final angle. All of the characters turned 240 degrees because they were all equilateral triangles and they have equal angles. The only variation between characters was the distance they had to move.

Once they completed their trails, I made them rotate again so they were facing upright and then the had to move the remaining distance to the opposite side from where they started. Since they ended where they started, the distance they moved before and after leaving the trail equaled 950 because they all started and ended vertically centered. The final piece was my name. I added a text object and edited it to say Emily. Then I changed it so my name would spin 360 degrees when the iPad was shaken. Below are pictures of one of the character’s blocks and the “Emily” blocks.

hopscotch blocks

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