The Official ScratchJr Book

Official ScratchJr Book

Help Your Kids Learn to Code
by Marina Umaschi Bers and Mitchel Resnick
October 2015, 160 pp.
Full Color

Featured on Boing Boing's 2016 Gift Guide!

“A great way for parents to learn about ScratchJr so they can get their kids up to speed and let them go off on their own. With full color screenshots on every page, The Official ScratchJr Book provides a thorough overview of everything ScratchJr is capable of doing.”
Boing Boing

“The Official Scratch Jr Book serves to educate teachers or parents as they in turn direct, explore, and create with children using the app. An incredibly informative guide for adults with little to no experience with coding and program writing.”
School Library Journal

“In step-by-step instructions with plenty of screen grabs, the format is child (and tech-fearful parent) friendly while encouraging children to solve problems. Helpful and fun for parents, educators, and children.”

The Official ScratchJr Book is a great guide for teaching our youngest minds the language of computer science.”
Geek Dad

ScratchJr is a free, introductory computer programming language that runs on iPads, Android tablets, Amazon tablets, and Chromebooks. Inspired by Scratch, the wildly popular programming language used by millions of children worldwide, ScratchJr helps even younger kids create their own playful animations, interactive stories, and dynamic games.

The Official ScratchJr Book is the perfect companion to this free app and makes coding easy and fun for all. Kids learn to program by connecting blocks of code to make characters move, jump, dance, and sing.

Each chapter includes several activities that build on one another, culminating in a fun final project. These hands-on activities help kids develop computational-thinking, problem-solving, and design skills. In each activity, you’ll find:

  • Step-by-step, easy-to-follow directions
  • Ways to connect the activity with literacy and math concepts
  • Tips for grown-ups and teachers
  • Creative challenges to take the learning further

By the end of the book, kids will be ready for all sorts of new programming adventures!

The ScratchJr app now supports English, Spanish, Catalan, Dutch, French, Italian, and Thai.

Download the Common Core Appendix

Author Bio 

Marina Umaschi Bers is a professor in the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Study and Human Development and adjunct professor in the Computer Science Department at Tufts University. She heads the Developmental Technologies Research group where she studies innovative ways to promote positive childhood development through new learning technologies. She is also the creator of KIBO, a robotics platform for children 4 to 7, which allows young builders to learn programming and engineering skills without screens.

Mitchel Resnick is the creator of Scratch, the wildly popular programming language used in thousands of schools and homes worldwide, with nearly 4 million users. He directs the Lifelong Kindergarten group at the MIT Media Lab and was awarded the McGraw Prize in Education in 2011 for his creative learning technologies.

Table of contents 

An Introduction to ScratchJr
Chapter 1: Getting Started
Chapter 2: Animations
Chapter 3: Stories
Chapter 4: Games
Appendix A: Transitioning from ScratchJr to Scratch
Appendix B: Reference Guides

View the detailed Table of Contents (PDF)
View the Index (PDF)


“One thing that I especially liked was the curriculum connections listed out at the end of each chapter. If you happen to be a kindergarten teacher, and have access to tablets, I highly recommend checking this book out.”
Gail Carmichael, Carleton University faculty and Board Advisor for the Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology

The Official ScratchJr Book is a great place to start. I highly recommend this book to all early childhood educators getting started with coding in their classrooms.”

The Official ScratchJr Book was chosen as a Book of the Year from Arts and Sciences by Tufts University!

Author Mitchel Resnick spoke to NPR Ed about how ScratchJr is making computer class more fun because it feels more like play than learning.

“A book for the youngest programmers with lots of step-by-step directions and illustrations for getting the most out of the junior version of Scratch."
Scholastic's Tech Tools

“Is it ever too early to begin programming a computer? By the end of The Official ScratchJr Book, kids will be ready for all sorts of new programming adventures!”

The Official ScratchJr Book is a great way to dive into ScratchJr. It’s fun, it’s challenging, and you can do it too.”
Game Vortex

“This is a well-done guidebook to help parents, siblings, teachers, friends and other family members get up to speed quickly with ScratchJr.”
Phil Shapiro, Scratch Day volunteer

The Official ScratchJr Book focuses on inspiring creativity and still can be used to learn the nuts and bolts of simple coding and logical thinking.”
STEM Friday