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INFORMATICS IN EDUCATION
Journal of Eastern and Central Europe

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INFORMATICS IN EDUCATION

ISSN 1648-5831

© Vilnius University Institute of Mathematics and Informatics

2014, Vol. 13, No. 1
pp. 33-50

The Effects of Teaching Programming
via Scratch on Problem Solving Skills:
A Discussion from Learners' Perspective

Filiz KALELIOĞLU1, Yasemin GÜLBAHAR2

1 Baskent University, Faculty of Education Baglica Campus. Ankara, Turkey
2 Ankara University, Department of Informatics Kecioren Campus. Ankara, Turkey

Abstract

Computer programming is perceived as an important competence for the development of problem solving skills in addition to logical reasoning. Hence, its integration throughout all educational levels, as well as the early ages, is considered valuable and research studies are carried out to explore the phenomenon in more detail. In light of these facts, this study is an exploratory effort to investigate the effect of Scratch programming on 5th grade primary school students' problem solving skills. Moreover, the researchers wondered what 5th grade primary school students think about programming. This study was carried out in an explanatory sequential mixed methods design with the participation of 49 primary school students. According to the quantitative results, programming in Scratch platform did not cause any significant differences in the problem solving skills of the primary school students. There is only a non-significant increase in the mean of the factor of "self- confidence in their problem solving ability". When the thoughts of the primary students were considered, it can be clearly stated that all the students liked programming and wanted to improve their programming. Finally, most of the students found the Scratch platform easy to use.

Keywords:

programming and programming languages; elementary education; improving classroom teaching.


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Vilnius University Institute of Mathematics and Informatics, 2014