Many teachers use Scratch in their classrooms these days. For those of you who don’t know what Scratch is, it is a visual programming language where users can create computer programmes by dragging and dropping “blocks” of code. It is extremely popular in Ireland with annual competitions.
Scratch 2.0 is the latest version of Scratch, which runs completely online. However, one thing you might not know is that Scratch 2.0 can be run in the Irish language! There are so few ICT tools out there in Irish, that this was a huge and welcome surprise for me. I think this is not only good news for Gaelscoileanna but also for any school teaching Irish. I played around with it briefly to do a really simple conversation piece and it worked really well.
It’s really good to see a piece of software that can be used to create Irish language programmes using something that uses the Irish language. Making a conversation is one idea but as with all content-free software, the possibilities are almost endless.
As Scratch is completely online, there’s nothing to download and you can select the language you want to use from the menu at the top so if you are teaching children with EAL, it is possible to let them use the programme in any language of your choosing.