Computer Programming for students in 21st century West Virginia!

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Coding helps kids develop academic skills, build qualities like perseverance and organization, and gain valuable 21st century skills...

- Infographic and quotation from, courtesy of Tynker.

Tech Club Projects

Due to school closures, the Tech Club will not be meeting face-to-face, and the Computer Vision Project is on hold. Hopefully it will start again in September.

Projects that are more suitable for individual work from home are currently under consideration.

If you have questions or are stuck with a technology question you think we may be able to answer, you can send a message from or email

Computer Vision Project

We’ll use the Raspberry Pi “single board computer” to capture images, make time-lapse videos, detect motion, read text, and more.

Team size: 2 or 3 students. Maximum 5 teams, depending on availability of adult volunteers. Session: 5 weeks, meeting once/wk for 1.5 hrs

The complete project plan is available here (12-page 2MB PDF).

Planned activities, time permitting:

  1. Take a picture
  2. Record a Video
  3. Video Editing
  4. Detect Motion
  5. Detect Faces
  6. Optical Character Recognition
  7. Make a Time-Lapse Movie
  8. Invisibility Cloak Illusion
  9. Final Video Editing

If more students are interested than we can accommodate, students will be taken in the order of this randomly-generated list of birthdays.

Cameras bring us images from around the world or personal to you. They are used to entertain, inform, record, and secure. They can explore places you cannot go: outer space, under the ocean, inside the human body.

What can you do with a camera?

This Project has little or no wiring, and the camera hardware is already set up for you. Instead, climb aboard the Python programming language, used worldwide by businesses and organizations for everything from data management to game development.

Under consideration for an April/May project session:

Two-Player Game: Detect Button Press and Control LEDs

Team size: 2 or 3 students

Session: 5 weeks, meeting once/wk for 1.5 hrs

A 2-player video game written in Scratch is controlled, not by sharing the keyboard, but by two hand-held controls that you make! As you score hits against your opponent, LEDs on your control light up.

You will be given some code written in the block programming language Scratch. Once you have everything working, you can replace the graphics, or modify the code as much as you want, to make it your own.

Marble Race: Detect Button Press and Control Motors

Team size: 2 or 3 students

Session: 5 weeks, meeting once/wk for 1.5 hrs

A blue marble and a red marble are dropped from the top of a series of ramps. The player with the red marble controls the tilt of two platforms and the player with the blue marble controls the tilt of the other two. Who will win? See a short simulation.

The board and the tilting platforms are set up for you. You have to connect wires from a small computer to the “servo motors” that control the tilt of each platform. You will also connect 4 buttons, 2 for each player, to the computer.

You will have some code written in Scratch, a block programming language, to read one set of buttons and move two of the 4 platforms. You will finish the project by writing the code for the other player.


“Tech Futures”

Click to view PDF

On January 16th and 17th, 4th through 7th graders saw work of fall 2019 Tech Club participants, and learned about opportunities in tech industries. Students received a copy of the handout shown at left.

Copies of posters which were on display appear below.

Click to view PDF Click to view PDF Click to view PDF Click to view PDF Click to view PDF


Raspberry Pi “Pin Charts” you can edit

(for Pi models with 40 pins)

Consider the following

How Do Computers Do Arithmetic?

Scratch Resources

Past Events

Ready for Scratching?

Thanks to everyone who helped and attended!

A Scratch Day event in Morgantown, West Virginia

What is Scratch Day?

What is Scratch?

Scratch is a programming language that makes it easy to create your own interactive stories, games, and animations and share your creations with others on the web.

Scratch helps young people learn to think creatively, reason systematically, and work collaboratively.

Scratch is developed by the Lifelong Kindergarten research group at the MIT Media Lab. The Scratch project has been supported with funding from the National Science Foundation, Intel Foundation, Microsoft,MacArthur Foundation, LEGO Foundation, Google, Dell, Inversoft, and the MIT Media Lab research consortia.

Scratch Day Posters