Drumbeat/events/Festival/program/Scratch Animation Soup

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  • Contact: Jose García Yeste (jgarcia at citilab dot eu)
  • Team: Jordi Delgado, Joan Güell, Jose García Yeste, Marina Conde, Victor Casado
  • Hosts: Citilab
  • Proposed 'space' or theme: Local tent at the square
  • Status: Proposed


Don’t eat the soup, become a short movie animation director. With soup pasta you can build an story, learn animation and scratch programing, all at once!

What do you want to achieve? (goal)

This activity has been designed to achieve media and digital literacy We introduce a challenge to reach using scratch with which people will learn programming using a simple story telling metaphor and an animation stop motion technique. Interactivity and animation are two aspects that will be key to the digital (r)evolution and through this activity we propose learners to begin to explore both issues quickly.

Who should come? How many? For how long? (audience)

Everybody can do the activity with scratch. Is perfect for educators that are interested on bringing computational thinking, and programming skills to schools. Youngsters and adults that want to learn about programing and digital storytelling

How many?

Maximum 12 participants/session

For how long?

1hour / session

What will they do when they get there? (activities)

This is a workshop to create small scripts, animation techniques for painting and finally assemble both in Scratch, which bring us closer to simple concepts of programming. The groups will be a maximum of 12 children and lasts one hour. They work in pairs and each has a computer with a webcam and Scratch. Everyone shares pencils and dolls soup.

Before the workshop

  1. Check that all computers have Scratch installed and the camera works.
  2. Prepare soup dolls. We have jungle animals, dinosaurs and alphabet soup.
  3. Must prepare colored pencils, blank sheets, and tape a pencil to sign the leaves.
  4. Magnetic board with magnets for a small animation.
  5. Box to box Animation (stop-motion)


We introduce this technique by means of examples. The drawings made of clay in Bounce is an example. It was made shaping the dough and taking pictures. Another example, suggested by the workshop proof assistant, are the books that quickly go through some pages with drawings in the corner. This also creates an animation effect. To conclude the explanation we will draw on the blackboard and go moving magnets to create a story.

History and drawing

We must not forget the script. The teams must have thought a story, drawn the scene and chosen the characters. The design stage should be with the thick lines to grab the camera well. The characters can be chosen from different kinds of soup. It is advisable not to put many characters simultaneously, since then you have to move many items and this complicates the job.

How to make animations with Scratch

First a brief introduction to Scratch for participants who do not know it. After preparing the setup, every time we push the camera button or press SPACE a shot will be taken. To make an animation of 5 seconds there should be about 25 shots.

Once you have made the capture, it's time to make the program that reproduces and view our animation.

The basic layout is as follows

It is a very simple program. We just have to establish an initial picture to start and then repeat forever change to the next picture. You can play with the value assigned to the waiting time between pictures to change the playback speed of the animation.

Once the activity is over, the animation may be uploaded to the Scratch main site to be shared by other participants

What will you / they have at the end? (outputs)

A team-made animation where the users have been the writers, directors and programmers at the same time. Sharing and commenting each animation at the end of the activity may be a nice way to introduce participants to the notion of peer review.

Additional background and context

Programming is the fun way to get people more interested in computational thinking, one of the basic skills of XXIst century. Educate children and youth to change tomorrow's world. We want citizens who are fluent in computational thinking to solve the challenges of the current society of knowledge. Therefore, we work to teach computational and logic thinking through programming.

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