This post is a tutorial on how to animate an acrostic poem using MIT’s coding program for kids, Scratch. Scratch is recommended for ages 9 and up. Scratch Jr is available for younger students. All you need is a laptop and internet! If you are interested in learning how to animate an acrostic poem in Scratch, keep reading!
First, start by creating a new Scratch project. I already deleted the default sprite. Then, add in whatever major letters you want to include in your acrostic poem. For this example, I am using the poem that I wrote during episode 4, S’mores Acrostic Poems Podcast.
After selecting a new sprite, use the search bar to find different styles of letters to use in your project.
One you put in all of your letter sprites, the letters may not all fit. You can change the size of the letters in the “size” box. Remember that acrostic poems are vertical (up and down).
Now, if you hate 🤮 the color of the preset letters… never fear!! Use the handy-dandy paint button to open up new screen to customize the Sprite.
Change the color of an area using the “fill bucket” tool.
Then, consider adding backdrop. Right next to the “add sprite” button, there is an “add backdrop” button.
Now, to add on the poetry portion. I came up with two different ways I wanted to do this, but there are UNLIMITED OPTIONS. This is where you can take some creative liberty, or freedom!
For beginners, I would recommend animating your letters to say the parts of the poem. Here is my poem (without animation) for reference.
You can choose whether you want your code to begin when you click the start button (like I did below) or when the letter is clicked, spacebar is pressed, etc… using the yellow “Events” tab. Then I used the purple “Looks” tab to make my sprite say “Come outside!” for 5 seconds.
So when I press the green flag, here is what happens now! I also added code from the orange “Control” tab to keep the speech bubble up forever.
So, you could do this to all of your letters, and voila!
To share your acrostic poem with us, give it a name and then press the orange “Share” button.
You will come to a screen like this:
Don’t forget to include instructions, as well as notes and credits. If you try our method, please mention our website in your credits!
Use the “Copy Link” button once you publish your work to email us the link to your project.
This is just a few basic ideas to get started with your scratch poem project. While researching this project, I also found a more advanced technique to create a “typewriter” effect. Check out this video from Create Code Load to see more:
Once again, please make sure to have an adult send submissions for kids who are under the age of 13. We can’t wait to see your projects! The deadline for the S’mores Acrostic Poem challenge is July 7, 2022. Winners will be announced on our podcast on July 10, 2022.