Scratch Beginners – Week 7 –

Hello everyone,

Today we took a look at, which is a drawing program. I quickly went through the menus but the best way to learn a program like this is to use it and experiment with it.


The main reason we looked at it this week was because we will need it next week as we begin our modelling and stop/motion animation. After we take our photos we will be able to “clean them up before we bring them into Scratch as our Sprites.


Next week, if the Moms and Dads could bring along a camera or phone along with the lead to attach these to your laptop.

And of course most important of all bring your imagination!

Here the full notes from todays session in PDF form. CDA-S3-Challenge07-LearnAboutPainting.pdf

ModderDojo Athenry Week 7: Learning More about Functions

In recent weeks, we have been writing JavaScript functions to build MineCraft structures using ScriptCraftJS.

Download our mods here:

This week, we spent a bit more time learning about functions, since they are an extremely important part of any programming language. Slides below.

Function Parameters

Default Values for Parameters

Multiple Functions in a Mod (1)

Multiple Functions in a Mod (2)

Helper Functions and Standalone Functions

Why Use Multiple Functions?

Week 6 – Guessing Game

Hello Everyone,

Great to see you all yesterday and welcome to our new members.

Yesterday, we made a slight departure from the games we have done in previous weeks. This weeks game was a mathematical Guessing Game.


We only had one sprite and one large block of code. We had to create variables and figure out all the possible situations that could occur when a guess was made.


Again this week, I am looking for you to add your own signature to your game by continuing to add some complexity. Yesterday I saw people add costumes so every time he guessed wrong, a sad face appears. There was also a lot of sound being added! You don’t have to keep all the code either, how about replacing the Repeat 5 times with a 60 seconds timer instead.

I would like you all to keep working on the game and those of you who like me to show your game to the rest of the room, like I did with Alex’s brilliant soccer game, please upload it to the Scratch website. I will show them before the session starts next week.

Next week as I said we will be doing, please download in advance if you can. See you all there.


Here are the notes in PDF form from our Week 6 Session. CDA-S3-Challenge06GuessNumbers.pdf

ModderDojo Athenry Week 6: Guidelines for Posting Mods


We are now sharing our ScriptCraftJS mods here:

We will keep updating that post as members of the group finish new mods.  Anybody anywhere can download our mods: when they click on the mod’s picture, they will get a link to download it from Dropbox.

Here are some guidelines for posting your mods:

  • Send the mod code and a picture of what it looks like to
  • Put a comment at the top with:
    • Your first name (e.g. “Michael from CoderDojo Athenry”) or your Minecraft handle: to look after your privacy online, never post your full name or other identifying information
    • A one-line description of what the mod does
    • If your mod has parameters, what they are for and what values work best
  • Put code near the top to set default parameters, e.g.:
    width = width || 10;
    This means: Set width to be equal to its current value, or if it is currently undefined, set it to 10
  • Check that your code looks fairly neat:
    • Use indentation: good spaces at the start of each line to line up the code
    • Include comments to explain things
    • Avoid commented-out code or code that does nothing
  • Test your code carefully and inspect its results to make sure it works as expected!


Python Beginners- Week 6: Lists

Today the Python group began looking at the Hangman Game from Invent Your Own Computer Games with Python ( There are many new concepts in this game so we are going to spend the next few weeks looking at these.

We looked at Lists which are a way of storing a number of values in one variable. We had some fun writing code snippets mainly based around X-Factor. They are available here

We looked at some new ways of working with strings such as multi-line strings.  We also learned about new types of functions called methods.

Next week we will be looking at a new type of loop called a for loop.

Here are my slides from today. python session6

Scratch Advanced – Week 5 – Cracking the Caesar Cipther

This week we began the task of cracking the following codeed message.


All we know is this message is written in English. To crack this code we will use some common features of the English language.

  1. In the coded mesage look for single letter words. These words probably map to a or I
  2. In the coded message look for the most common three letter words. These words are the, and
  3. in the coded message look at the spelling of any other small word to see if we can figure out their original form.

How to crack Ceasar Cipher

The following link was the hand out provided to everyone. Each person used this handout to work through each stage of the decryption.

Can you decrypt this message (pupils notes)

The teachers handouts is available at the following link. This handout provides detailed steps of how to work through decrypting the message.

Can you decrypt this message (teachers notes)

Scratch Advanced – Week 4 – Cryptography the Caesar Cipther

This week we created on of the most famous ciphers the Caesar Cipher. This cipher is named after the Roman emperor Julius Caesar.

The Caesar cipher works by shifting each letter of the alphabet by a specific number.

In the example of the Caesar Cipher below the letters in the PlainText alphabet have been shifted by three places.

Cipher shift

The letter a becomes D, the letter g becomes J and so on.

Using a Caesar Cipher with an offset of three the words Coder Dojo Athenry would become FRGHU GRMR DWKHQUB

The notes for this session on how to create a Caesar Cipher using Scratch are here: Scratch Encryption project Ceasar Cipher

ModderDojo Athenry: Our ScriptCraftJS Minecraft Mods

This is a list of Minecraft ScriptCraft mods that we have built in ModderDojo, which is part of CoderDojo Athenry. Contact us on Twitter at @coderdojoathenr.

All of these mods run on a CraftBukkit server and use Walter Higgins’ excellent ScriptCraftJS framework.

To download a mod, click on the image. Then copy the file into a folder inside the js-plugins folder, which you should be able to find under your ScriptCraft folder after installing ScriptCraftJS and running it.

All of these mods are open-source: you are welcome to download them, use them and modify them, but you must give credit to the original authors.

Rail Tunnel by Harry and Ivan: 2013-12-07_12.55.17

/js railer( )
A rail tunnel that can be placed underground. Uploaded 7 Dec 2013.

Beacon by Richard: 2013-11-30_12.47.36

/js beacon2( )
Makes a pyramid of emerald with a beacon on top. Uploaded 7 Dec 2013.

Stable by Richard: 2013-11-30_12.47.15

/js stable( )
Makes a detailed stable. Uploaded 7 Dec 2013.

Stone Farmhouse by Oisin: 2013-12-07_12.29.31

/js stonehouse( )
Makes a house of stone with garden and rooms inside. Uploaded 7 Dec 2013.

Iron House by Eoin: 2013-12-07_12.36.40

/js ironhouse( )
Makes a single iron house. Uploaded 7 Dec 2013.

Iron Street by Eoin: 2013-12-07_12.25.59

/js ironstreet( )
Makes a street with 6 iron houses. Required ironhouse() to be installed f irst. Uploaded 7 Dec 2013.

Pumpkin Patch by Mikey: pumpkin

/js pumpkin( )
Makes a Portable Productive Planted Pumpkin Patch. Uploaded 28 Nov 2013.

Apartment by Luke: apartment1

/js apartment(floors, width)
Multi-storey apartment with furniture on each floor. Parameters: floors (e.g. 10), width  (7 is best). Uploaded 23 Nov 2013.

The Castle by Conor: TheCastle

/js thecastle(floors, width)
Large castle with outer walls and keep. Parameters: number of floors in the keep (e.g. 3); width of the castle (e.g. 40). Uploaded 17 Nov 2013.

Surprise by Ruaidhri: surprise

/js surprise( )
To find out what this does, run it or read the code. Just add flint and steel! Uploaded 28 Nov 2013.

City Block by Ruaidhri: Citye

/js citye( )
Sky scrapers arranged in two rows with a road. Uploaded 17 Nov 2013.

Pyramid by Ruaidhri: PyrimidInside

/js pyramid( )
Pyramid with door and lights inside.  Uploaded 11 Nov 2013.

Wizard Tower by Conor: 2013-11-10_10.45.39

/js wizardtower(floors, width)
Round tower with side room. Parameters: number of floors (e.g. 6); width of tower (e.g. 10). Uploaded 11 Nov 2013.

Train Tunnel by Luke: Tunnel1

/js traintunnel( )
Tunnel with tracks and lanterns.  Uploaded 11 Nov 2013..

More to follow!

Scratch Beginners – Week 5. Building on what we learned & adding a pinch of imagination!

In this weeks Session, I tried to continue using everything we have learned so far, and also showed some alternative code for code we have used previously. As I always say, there is always more than one way to do something.


Today, I also wanted you to create your own game, using the code I would be showing you but each persons game was to look different. As always, your minds are much more artistic and entertaining than mine and I saw some fantastic ideas around the room.


If you get  a chance during your busy week, you should go back over your first couple of games and see can you add some more complexity to them. Add a score or a level, or can you use broadcasting to communicate between the sprites.

But above all…have fun with it!

Here are the full notes in PDF form of todays session. CDA-S3-Challenge05Paddle_Ball.PDF