Sunday 28 May, 2017

Seprod Foundation makes big impact with Scratch Day

A student engages in an activity at the Scratch Day event last week.

A student engages in an activity at the Scratch Day event last week.

The Seprod Foundation in partnership with Halls of Learning last Friday held what has been billed as the first ever “Scratch Day” in Jamaica.

Scratch is a free offline and online platform allowing users to create animation, games and interactive stories and is a programme that Halls of Learning founder Marvin Hall –  credited as a pioneer for modern and innovative education in Jamaica - has used as a teaching tool with his students.

The Scratch Day event was held at the UWI Regional Headquarters from 10 am to 4pm, with over 300 students ages five to 18 years - with 31 Teachers representing over 19 schools  - engaged in various Scratch activities that allowed them to share, meet and learn.

Scratch Day 2017

  • “No computer coding experience was needed for any of the online and offline activities as the Hall of Learning team was ready and quick to assist teachers and children,” Seprod Foundation said in a press release.

    “Students were excited to play, share, learn and experiment with students from all over the island in hourly sessions. Teachers and parents also received the opportunity to see what Scratch was all about,” the release said.

    Hall and the Seprod Foundation also conducted a series of 11 free Teacher Training Seminars where over 160 teachers from over 50 schools were trained which ultimately impacted nearly 13,000 students in classrooms island-wide.

    The Halls of Learning founder described the activities as “the most impactful” yet as it is the first event of its kind to be hosted in Jamaica.

    He added, “It was very special to work with interpreters in order to have deaf teachers and students in our last series of Teacher Workshops and Scratch Day. It validated not only the need to serve this often ignored segment of our population but also signaled the power of Scratch and its ability to engage without the use of sound.”