Diving into the world of programming for kids can seem daunting, but it doesn't have to be! Enter the Scratch course for beginners - a gateway to a fun, interactive learning experience that strips away the complexities of traditional coding.

Today, you will discover the ins and outs of Scratch for kids, its user-friendly interface, and how it can transform a novice into a budding programmer. You'll uncover the best Scratch courses for beginners that reveal the magic behind Scratch's drag-and-drop blocks and how they bring colorful characters to life, teaching key programming concepts along the way. And as a little hint of what's to come, you might be surprised to learn just how innovative and diverse the projects created by Scratch beginners can be!

Find the Best Scratch Course for Beginners

Over 42 million kids have created projects on Scratch already! Explore award-winning online Scratch courses for all ages. All of these classes are led live by experts, include real-world applications, and are designed by professionals from Google, Stanford and MIT to help your student develop a passion for STEM.

1. Scratch Ninja

Beginner-friendly, Grades 2-5, Live online, Expert led, Small group

Ideal for elementary students, in this live online award-winning course, your child will learn more than just how to create a project; they will develop essential computational, creative, and critical thinking skills. They'll work their way up from the basics to mastering advanced Scratch games. In each stage, their critical thinking will be challenged with fun and complex problems, from creating interactive games to animating characters to tackling jungle adventures! These sessions aren't about memorization but focus on learning by doing, offering your child a chance to create something new in every session. And since it's live and expert-led, you can expect an interactive and responsive learning experience. By the end, you'll be amazed at what your child has created and the advanced coding concepts they've mastered! The best way to begin is with the free intro session:

2. Acclerated Scratch

Beginner-friendly, Grades 5-9, Live online, Expert led, Small group

Perfect for middle schoolers and high schoolers, this live online course aims to boost your child's coding confidence and interest within a few hours! They'll learn essential coding concepts like loops, variables, and sensing, along with more advanced concepts like functions and lists. The curriculum is designed to let students learn by doing, tackling new, complex projects in every session, from animations and games to graphic design and storytelling. This hands-on approach, combined with an emphasis on creativity, critical thinking, and problem solving, helps ensure your child will not just learn to code, but also to think like a coder. By the end of the class series, your child will even have the opportunity to create a unique game of their own, guided by the instructor. Offering live, expert-led sessions, this course is a fantastic gateway into the world of programming for your tween or teen. Start with no stress by joining the free intro session:

3. Scratch Junior

Beginner-friendly, Grades K-2, Live online, Expert led, Small group

Excite your kindergartener's creative genius and nurture their coding curiosity with the ScratchJr series, a live online, expert-led course that introduces the basics of coding through interactive stories and games. In this immersive class for grades K-2, your child will learn to bring their favorite characters to life using the Scratch Junior platform, developed by the innovative team at MIT that also made Scratch. They'll start by coding a fun animation, then progress to creating more complex projects where they not only learn core coding concepts such as loops and events but also get to flex their artistic muscles. Get started with the fun intro session:

4. Scratch Junior Club

Grades K-2, Live online, Expert led, Small group

The Scratch Junior Club lets your child (grades K-2) put their newfound skills into action, creating exciting new projects each week for six weeks. Whether designing a word puzzle, coding their favorite story, or even staging a game of hide and seek, your child will enjoy the thrill of creation while reinforcing their coding skills. This class series is a fantastic way to encourage problem-solving, creativity, and computational thinking in your child, all while having a blast!

5. Scratch Game Building Club

Grades 3-6, Live online, Expert led, Small group

Get ready for a thrilling adventure into the world of game creation with this live, expert-led online class where your child will not just play games, but also create them! This course is designed for students who have completed Scratch Ninja 1 and 2, offering a deeper dive into concepts such as variables, messages, and cloning, and applying them to create fascinating projects. Imagine the pride your child will feel when they develop their own soccer game or create a virtual pet that they can interact with. Each week presents a new challenge, with the opportunity to construct games like the fast-paced 'Pop the Lock' or even utilize video sensing to make a sprite interact with the player. This isn't just about having fun, though - as they build their games, your child will strengthen problem-solving skills, promote creativity, and master key computational concepts. Gear up for an action-packed learning experience!

6. Pokémon Game Building Class

Grades 2-6, Live online, Expert led, Small group

Dive into the exciting world of Pokémon with this live online class, where your child will get to build their very own interactive Pokémon games. Under the guidance of an expert teacher, your child will create and conquer fun challenges, like creating a Pokémon virtual pet, playing a game of two-player Pokémon soccer, and even using their computer's video camera to catch Pokémon. All the while, they will be learning and mastering key coding concepts such as lists, variables, messages, and cloning - crucial skills for future game development. With favorite characters and loads of fun, this class is a fantastic way to transform screen time into a learning adventure.

Basic Introduction To Scratch Coding

Scratch is a vibrant, user-friendly programming language developed by the MIT Media Lab that enables beginners, especially kids, to create interactive stories, games, and animations. When you first open Scratch, you'll notice its split into three main areas: the Stage, the Blocks Palette, and the Scripts Area.

  • The Stage is where you can view your creations come to life.
  • The Blocks Palette houses a variety of programming blocks categorized by their functionality like motion, looks, sounds, etc.
  • Lastly, the Scripts Area is where you put together these blocks to form scripts that control the behaviors of the sprites (characters or objects).

Starting a Scratch project is as simple as dragging and dropping blocks to the Scripts Area, making sure to begin with an event block (e.g., 'when green flag clicked'). Double-click on your script to see it in action on the Stage! It's exciting to watch your creation take shape in real time. Follow our complete guide to how to use Scratch here.

Remember, exploring and experimenting are key aspects of the Scratch experience, so dive in and have fun! Do you know how to make your own background, change your character by adding a hat, or even add your own recorded sounds to your games?! Find out below:

Here are some beginner-friendly Scratch exercises and Scratch challenges to try.

Essential Tips and Best Practices for Scratch Beginners

When starting your journey with Scratch, keep these handy tips and best practices in mind:

  1. Experiment Freely: Scratch is designed to be a playground for your child's ideas. Don't be afraid to let them test, tweak, and tinker. They can't break the stage!
  2. Try The Tutorials: Take advantage of the free tutorials under the Ideas tab. They provide inspiration, guidance, and help you understand different coding techniques. We also have a number of free step-by-step tutorials your student might enjoy such as how to create a game on Scratch.
  3. Break Problems into Smaller Parts: When working on complex projects, break them down into smaller, manageable tasks. This approach helps students tackle one challenge at a time and ensures a more organized coding process.
  4. Start Small: Begin with small, manageable projects to familiarize your child with the Scratch interface and blocks.
  5. Practice Regularly: Like any other skill, regular practice is key to mastering Scratch. Whether it's 20 minutes a day or a couple of hours every weekend, find a routine that works for your student.

Learn Coding with a Scratch Course for Beginners

By now, you've seen the exciting opportunities a Scratch course for beginners can provide, from fostering creativity to honing problem-solving skills. What's more, a recent study revealed that students engaged in Scratch improved at programming, underlining its effectiveness as a learning tool. A great place to start would be free Scratch classes by Create & Learn, tailored to make coding a fun, interactive experience. See your child's confidence soar as they navigate, understand, and ultimately master the basics of programming.