Learn to plan and design a variety of game types. Over the course of a week, you will design and build 2D platformers, top-down games, side scrollers, and physics-based games. Campers will build a foundation of programming basics and apply them as they build a different class of game each day. Work on a collaborative project with friends. At the end of the week, show off your original games and play them with friends and family. No prior programming experience required.
* Online courses require a modern desktop computer, laptop computer, Chromebook, or Netbook with Internet access and a Chrome (29+), Firefox (30+), Safari (7+), or Edge (20+) browser. No downloads required.
Time: 45+ mins
IntroductionIn this lesson, campers will solve fun coding puzzles as they combine sequencing, conditional logic, and loops. As campers complete the Dragon Dash puzzles, they'll help a friendly dragon reach treasure by flying, moving, blasting, and eating its way through obstacles. Additionally, campers will create and customize a dragon avatar! In the Star Runner puzzle modules, campers will navigate a spaceship Actor on a grid. They'll need to use the grid to determine how far to move the Actor and apply geometry knowledge to determine what angle to turn the Actor.
- Computer, laptop, or tablets (1 per camper)
: Move the Actor forward. : Make the Actor move up. : Repeat blocks inside this loop a specified number of times. : Make the Actor repeat this loop until a true or false (boolean value) determines when the block should stop repeating the code inside it. : Make the Actor eat objects. : Make the Actor destroy objects. : Make the Actor move down. : Make the Actor face the opposite direction. : Move the Actor the specified number of units forward. : If the condition is true, then run the code inside the block. : Rotate the Actor to the right (clockwise) a specified degree. : Rotate the Actor to the left (counter-clockwise) a specified degree.
- Coding: Using a computer language to tell the computer what to do
- Sequence: The order in which steps or events happen
- Actors: Tynker characters and objects that can talk and interact with each other
- Command: A specific action or instruction that tells the computer to do something
- Loop: An action that repeats one or more commands over and over
- Counting loop: A loop that repeats one or more commands a specific number of times
- Condition: A logical expression that evaluates to true or false
- Conditional statement: A type of statement that executes different parts of the code based on whether a logical expression evaluates to true or false
- Apply conditional logic and sequencing to solve puzzles
- Use code blocks to solve puzzles
Getting Started (5 minutes)Tell campers that today's coding activities involve navigating through obstacles. Practice this concept by completing the activity below:
- Pair up campers. Next, ask one partner to navigate their other partner to a specified location (for example, to the door, across the room, etc.). Make sure to avoid obstacles and use the following directions: forward, backward, turn right, turn left. After teams successfully navigated their partner to the destination, ask them to switch roles and choose a new destination to navigate to.
Coding Activities (40+ minutes)The lessons are intended for self-directed learning. Your role will be to facilitate as campers complete the Introduction modules on their own:
1. Overview (Video)
- A friendly archer demonstrates how to attach Tynker code blocks. Additionally, the archer mentions that campers can create animations, greeting cards, music videos, games, and more using Tynker.
- Campers will have 60 seconds to build their own dragon using Tynker's Character Creator tool. They can customize the dragon's wings, legs, face, accessories, and more!
- To solve this puzzle module, campers will need to use one “forward” block to get the dragon to the treasure.
- Make sure campers are attaching the code blocks correctly.
- Tell campers to press the Play button to run their code.
- Are campers using too many "forward" blocks? Explain that using one "forward" block will make the dragon move forward until it reaches an obstacle.
- This puzzle module introduces the "repeat" block, which will repeat the code blocks inside it for a specified number of times.
- Campers can solve this puzzle using only "fly up" and "forward" blocks, but encourage them to use the "repeat" block.
- Are campers struggling with the "repeat" block?
- Tell them to write down the steps, work together, and identify the pattern before using any code blocks.
- Point out that the "repeat" block will repeat code blocks for a specified number of times, which is shown in the number inside the "repeat" block.
- Give a hint: Tell campers that the value of the "repeat" block is set to the incorrect value of "2." They need to change the "repeat" block to the correct value of "3."
- This puzzle module introduces the "eat," "blast," and "if-then" code blocks.
- Point out that the "eat" block will make the dragon eat the fly in front of it and the "blast" block will make the dragon breathe fire (or ice) on the enemy.
- Give a hint: Ask campers, "What needs to happen in order for the 'if-then' code block to run? In other words, what condition needs to be met?"
- Emphasize to campers that the dragon must eat a firefly in order to blast a knight.
- To solve this puzzle module, campers will need to use code blocks to navigate the spaceship to trace the "L" shape.
- Emphasize that the "turnRight" code block only changes the spaceship's direction--it does not move the spaceship forward.
- Tell campers that they can change the value inside the code blocks.
- Give a hint: Ask campers…
- How many degrees does the spaceship need to turn to outline the triangle? (Answer: 120 degrees.)
- How many degrees does the spaceship need to turn to outline the square? (Answer: 90 degrees.)
- Optional: Encourage campers to use two "repeat" blocks: Use one "repeat" block to create a square, and use another "repeat" block to create a triangle.
Wrap UpUnplugged Activity: Discussion
Review today’s coding adventure by leading a discussion. Ask campers:
- What is a sequence? (Answer: The order in which steps or events happen.)
- What did you learn about sequencing when completing the coding puzzles?
- What is one piece of advice you would give someone struggling with coding puzzles?