[Make'n'Meet Workshop Share-Out] Scratch Sensing without a micro:bit

Hey, PLIXers!
Did you attend our December activity workshop, Scratch Sensing without a Micro:bit? :robot_face:Here’s your chance to share out your creations, and some reflections on the workshop content :handshake:
On this thread, share a link to the Scratch project you created at the workshop using the Control the Weather prompt, and describe a bit about your process (including which sensing feature you used). You can also add your project to the shared studio on Scratch :thunder_cloud_and_rain:
Please also share any reflections you have about facilitating this activity with your patrons:

  • What are some key facilitation tips that might arise when you’re running this workshop?
  • How do you see this activity running in your library?
  • What are some other ways to explore Scratch sensing (prompts that excite you; themes that align with things your library is currently doing)?
    Looking forward to checking out everyone’s projects :frog:

@Chris_Dorman I am so interested to see how you fixed the cloning issue. Will you share your project to the studio please? https://scratch.mit.edu/studios/30784854


Hi Everyone!
So for my project I was working with the Video Sensing tray. It can be a little finicky to set up, especially if you’re on a Zoom call, but once you get there we had a lot of fun messing with the different sensitivities.

I made a little code where I’m the north wind that ‘blows’ the sprite backwards, try it out!

And if you need help setting it up, I found this video really useful

We had a great time talking in group about how to make code approachable for all ages, and how to remix activities for a low barrier to entry.

Some questions that I still have about the scratch Video sensing feature:

-What is the difference between ‘motion’ and ‘direction’? We think motion is movement, and direction is how close/far you are to the camera, but the sensing isn’t always consistent. The difference between stage and sprite also seems a bit wonky at times.

-Would like to incorporate multiple sensing features, like perhaps a video and a sound??

Lotta thoughts, but fun workshop! Feel free to comment here if you have other questions or if you end up watching the recording and trying out some of these prompts


Hello, hello, weather-manipulators! :zap:

First, I wanted to share out the slides from today’s session; you can find them here. Feel free to remix and use for your own PLIX programming!

At the workshop, I teamed up with @aaffinito, @Chris_Dorman, and @zmw to explore video sensing in Scratch. I’d seen it a bunch before in amazing projects, but had never tinkered with it myself. I ended up remixing a project that Allie made, and added my own twist using new sprites and telling a story about a squirrel’s hunt for acorns! Here’s a link to the project, as an example of it in action:

ezgif.com-gif-maker (3)

Shout out to @aaffinito for such excellent facilitation in our breakout!

1 Like

I made a sound-activated rain shower since we didn’t have an example of that yet.


@averymsnormandin : to add to the studio, I think we have to just comment on the studio?


Added your project, @binka! I sang the song, per the instructions, and it worked flawlessly!


Thanks for trying it out! Worked much better for me before Veda started creating lunch-making noises behind my humming!

1 Like

Were people able to find the different sensing options ok? We specifically looked at
(1) keyboard or mouse clicks instead of the A & B buttons on the micro:bit — this works especially well with Bluetooth peripherals for similar mobility!
(2) sound input using the “loudness” cyan sensing block instead of the micro:bit microphone input.
(3) video sensing using the teal blocks (which you can add by clicking on the blue extension square in the lower left corner) to replace the motion sensor on the micro:bit for detecting gestures.

Additional resources:

Video sensing notes from Exploratorium Tinkering Studio

Scratch cards for Video Sensing and Educator Guides for many Scratch projects, including Video Sensing (last 4 pages of PDF).

Creating microworlds in Scratch, when you want to limit the blocks that your learners access.

1 Like

Wow I was way out of practice with Scratch. In fact, I think I hadn’t really played with it since 2.0. So the interface takes some getting used to. I admit I missed some of the old functions. But 3.0 is pretty jazzy.
Here is my very basic Happy Holidays message for you:


I finally got to sit down and work on this.

My first idea didn’t quite fit with the prompt, I liked the idea of making a version of “don’t break the ice” with the sprite going back and forth over giant crystals representing ice and some sort of randomizer determining when the ice would break. It was more steps than I can handle at my current level of Scratch intelligence :smiley:

During our session, I laid everything out and was still fiddling with the crystal costumes.

Going back to it today I learned I might have had trouble with “color touches color” triggering an action. I watched How to Make a Story in Scratch to help me reset the position and costumes at the Green Go flag.

And then I added the video sensing blocks that were introduced in the session.

Now what I have is motion activated snow with sounds that can be stopped by pressing the space bar.. I was able to add another costume for the sprite, and turn a ball sprite into snow.

This experience with Scratch, and the video I referenced here, is giving me ideas on how we can use Scratch next summer with adults. Our theme for all ages will be stories and it would be an interesting challenge to create a bunch of stories!