Block-Based Coding

Block-based coding is a type of programming that uses a visual drag-and-drop interface instead of a source code editor. By connecting various blocks, novice developers can write programs without knowing a programming language.

Individual blocks within a block-based coding project represent commands, such as move and turn, and clauses, such as when, while, and if then statements. A string of blocks can be attached to one or more objects, such as an image or sprite. For example, a basic program may display a cat sprite that moves the cat to the center of the canvas and plays a "meow" sound when clicked. The program would require the following three blocks, attached to the cat object.

  1. When clicked (clause)
  2. Move to center (command)
  3. Play sound "meow" (command)

More complex programs include multiple sprites that interact with each other. With enough blocks, it is possible to create detailed animations or interactive games.

Block-based coding is primarily used as a learning tool for beginning programmers. It has a lower barrier to entry and provides an accessible introduction to software development. For many students, block-based coding is a simple, visual way to learn programming concepts.

Updated November 5, 2021

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