Programming Books

7 Best Free Books to Learn about Scratch

Scratch is a visual programming language developed by the Lifelong Kindergarten Group at the MIT Media Lab. Scratch teaches programming concepts to kids, offering a stepping stone to more complicated programming languages. Coding includes dragging and dropping various code blocks and linking them together like jigsaw pieces to form logical scripts. While the MIT Media Lab designed this language for 8-16 year-old children, it is used by people of all ages.

Scratch has received many plaudits as an ideal way to introduce kids to computer programming and computational thinking. It’s a fantastic beginner’s language. Scratch is often used to make games, interactive stories, and animations, but it can be used for any purpose. The language uses event-driven programming with multiple active objects. The language helps students to think creatively, reason logically, and work together. The language is frequently used in schools, libraries, community centres, and museums.

Scratch is released under an open source license. I recommend 7 free books that really help young people master Scratch. These recommended texts are also open source goodness.


1. Scratch Programming Playground: Learn to Program by Making Cool Games by Al Sweigart

Scratch Programming PlaygroundScratch Programming Playground: Learn to Program warrants our strongest recommendation for anyone looking to learn Scratch from scratch (pun intended). You don’t need any programming knowledge. As long as you’ve mastered basic arithmetic, you’ll be fine with the material here. The book makes Scratch very easy to learn for all ages.

This book is not intended to offer a complete guide to Scratch, but there’s enough material to begin you on your journey. Along the way you’ll learn Scratch by writing some fun games such as Maze Runner, Fruit Slicer, Platformer, and Asteroid Breaker.

Scratch Programming Playground is free to read online under a Creative Commons license.

The online version is available to read at https://inventwithscratch.com/book/. There’s also print and ebook versions available to purchase.


2. Learn to Code with Scratch by The MagPi Team

Learn to Code with Scratch Learn to Code with Scratch helps you start coding with Scratch, guiding you step by step through the process of creating all sorts of projects: games, animations, quizzes, electronics circuits, and more.

It’s educational and bags of fun.

The book is licensed under a Creative Commons license.

Read the PDF book at https://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi-issues/Essentials_Scratch_v1.pdf.


3. {code club} Book of Scratch by Rik Cross, Tracy Gardner

Book of ScratchBook of Scratch teaches you how to code with Scratch and Code Club.

You’ll tackle fun topics such as how to use Scratch and start coding, make music with a fun coding project, create an animation, build a spooky ghost-catching game, code your own chatbot, learn how co-ordinates work with a fun game, create a boat racing game, and there’s some handy cope snippets for integrating in your own projects.

If you’re not aware, Code Club is a fantastic collection of computing clubs around the world where young people learn how to write games, animations, websites, and more.

Read this PDF book here. The book is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

The MagPi Team have written other useful computing books away from Scratch such as an Introduction to C & GUI programming.


4. An Introduction to Computing Science: Starting from Scratch – (updated 2016 using Scratch 2)

Starting from ScratchThis book seeks to introduce learners to Computing Science via the Scratch 2.0 programming environment.

The package includes a tutor pack, a learner pack, together with media files, and screencasts.

Chapters cover the following topics: Scratching the Surface, Story Time, A Mazing Game, Get the Picture?, and Forest Archery Game.

Some of the material within this resource is based on existing work from the ScratchEd site, reproduced and adapted under Creative Commons license.

To read the book visit the Computer Science Resources section at https://www.rse.org.uk/schools/resources/.


Next page: Page 2 – Creative Computing and more books

Pages in this article:
Page 1 – Scratch Programming Playground: Learn to Program by Making Cool Games and more books
Page 2 – Creative Computing and more books


All books in this series:

Free Programming Books
AdaALGOL-like programming language, extended from Pascal and other languages
AgdaDependently typed functional language based on intuitionistic Type Theory
ArduinoInexpensive, flexible, open source microcontroller platform
AssemblyAs close to writing machine code without writing in pure hexadecimal
AwkVersatile language designed for pattern scanning and processing language
BashShell and command language; popular both as a shell and a scripting language
BASICBeginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code
CGeneral-purpose, procedural, portable, high-level language
C++General-purpose, portable, free-form, multi-paradigm language
C#Combines the power and flexibility of C++ with the simplicity of Visual Basic
ClojureDialect of the Lisp programming language
ClojureScriptCompiler for Clojure that targets JavaScript
COBOLCommon Business-Oriented Language
CoffeeScriptTranscompiles into JavaScript inspired by Ruby, Python and Haskell
CoqDependently typed language similar to Agda, Idris, F* and others
CrystalGeneral-purpose, concurrent, multi-paradigm, object-oriented language
CSSCSS (Cascading Style Sheets) specifies a web page’s appearance
DGeneral-purpose systems programming language with a C-like syntax
DartClient-optimized language for fast apps on multiple platforms
DylanMulti-paradigm language supporting functional and object-oriented coding
ECMAScriptBest known as the language embedded in web browsers
EiffelObject-oriented language designed by Bertrand Meyer
ElixirRelatively new functional language running on the Erlang virtual machine
ErlangGeneral-purpose, concurrent, declarative, functional language
F#Uses functional, imperative, and object-oriented programming methods
FactorDynamic stack-based programming language
ForthImperative stack-based programming language
FortranThe first high-level language, using the first compiler
GoCompiled, statically typed programming language
GroovyPowerful, optionally typed and dynamic language
HaskellStandardized, general-purpose, polymorphically, statically typed language
HTMLHyperText Markup Language
IconWide variety of features for processing and presenting symbolic data
JArray programming language based primarily on APL
JavaGeneral-purpose, concurrent, class-based, object-oriented, high-level language
JavaScriptInterpreted, prototype-based, scripting language
JuliaHigh-level, high-performance language for technical computing
KotlinMore modern version of Java
LabVIEWDesigned to enable domain experts to build power systems quickly
LaTeXProfessional document preparation system and document markup language
LispUnique features - excellent to study programming constructs
LogoDialect of Lisp that features interactivity, modularity, extensibility
LuaDesigned as an embeddable scripting language
MarkdownPlain text formatting syntax designed to be easy-to-read and easy-to-write
Objective-CObject-oriented language that adds Smalltalk-style messaging to C
OCamlThe main implementation of the Caml language
PascalImperative and procedural language designed in the late 1960s
PerlHigh-level, general-purpose, interpreted, scripting, dynamic language
PHPPHP has been at the helm of the web for many years
PostScriptInterpreted, stack-based and Turing complete language
PrologA general purpose, declarative, logic programming language
PureScriptSmall strongly, statically typed language compiling to JavaScript
PythonGeneral-purpose, structured, powerful language
QMLHierarchical declarative language for user interface layout - JSON-like syntax
RDe facto standard among statisticians and data analysts
RacketGeneral-purpose, object-oriented, multi-paradigm, functional language
RakuMember of the Perl family of programming languages
RubyGeneral purpose, scripting, structured, flexible, fully object-oriented language
RustIdeal for systems, embedded, and other performance critical code
ScalaModern, object-functional, multi-paradigm, Java-based language
SchemeA general-purpose, functional language descended from Lisp and Algol
ScratchVisual programming language designed for 8-16 year-old children
SQLAccess and manipulate data held in a relational database management system
Standard MLGeneral-purpose functional language characterized as "Lisp with types"
SwiftPowerful and intuitive general-purpose programming language
TclDynamic language based on concepts of Lisp, C, and Unix shells
TeXMarkup and programming language - create professional quality typeset text
TypeScriptStrict syntactical superset of JavaScript adding optional static typing
ValaObject-oriented language, syntactically similar to C#
VHDLHardware description language used in electronic design automation
VimLPowerful scripting language of the Vim editor
XMLRules for defining semantic tags describing structure ad meaning
Share this article

One comment

Share your Thoughts

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.