Coding for Carrots - Today's Google Doodle
Coding for Carrots - Today's Google Doodle
Written by Sue Gee   
Monday, 04 December 2017

Today's Google Doodle is a delightful coding tutorial, reminding us if we need reminding, that today marks the start of Computer Science Education Week. If you are looking right now for a simple introduction to coding suitable look no further than the Google Home page.  

googledoodle

Coding for Carrots is the first ever coding Google Doodle and uses the Scratch programming language. It has been created by the Google Doodle team in collaboration Google Blockly team and researchers from MIT - where Scratch originated and is still being developed.

Although I initially imagined that it was unveiled today to welcome this year's Hour of Code. instead it is billed as a celebration of 50 year's of kids coding. MIT's Champika Fernando,Director of Communications, Scratch Team explains:

In the 1960’s, long before personal computers, Seymour Papert and researchers at MIT developed Logo - the first coding language designed for kids. With Logo, children could program the movements of a turtle, giving them the opportunity to explore ideas in math and science. Papert and his colleagues envisioned that computers could eventually be used by all children as a powerful tool for learning. They saw coding as a way for kids to develop confidence and fluency with a piece of powerful, modern, and one-day ubiquitous technology.

 

googled3

 

Coding for Carrots introduces one of the most powerful ideas in coding, the loop - in fact the nested loop.

 

goodooloops

 

It achieves this in just six level, from the first in which you eat  up two carrots in a straight line, through adding a turn and collecting carrots from four sides of a square to through introducing the loop and collecting carrots in a figure of eight.

Level 6 is a challenge even to an experienced programmer and the solution shown here is a bit of a kludge as it fails to take account of the missing squares - but it works and with fewer blocks than the hint suggests are required.

googled2

 

Repeating three jumps and a turn eventually covers every square of the board but we only avoid falling off at the missing corners because the rabbit isn't allowed to jump into the abyss - so one less block but a bit of cheat.

If you have a more elegant solution please use the comments!

You'll find plenty more Blockly/Scratch puzzles among the Hour of Code Activities - and for a less ambitious introduction to Blocks see the Code Lab in Google's Santa Tracker.

More Information

Celebrating 50 years of Kids Coding

Hour of Code Activities

Related Articles

Scratch Blocks For Beginners In Developer Preview

Google Blockly - A Graphical Language with a Difference

ScratchJr - Teaching Kids To Code

A Programmer's Guide to Scratch 2

Teach Code In School - Before It's Too Late!

Google Launches CS EDU Website 

Google's Santa Tracker Introduces Coding Lab

Countdown to Xmas with Santa Tracker

Blockly Games Introduce Kids To Code

Resources for Hour of Code

Hour of Code 2017 Introduces App Lab

 

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