scratch jrThe Official Scratch Jr. Book” by Bers and Resnick, is $20 from NoStarch Press and is designed to teach you, the adult, how to teach children ages five to seven, how to create programs using the computer language “ScratchJr.”

The main character in “ScratchJr” is a cartoon cat that moves at your command. But you don’t have to learn any commands. Both “ScratchJr” (for tablets) and “Scratch” (for computers) let you move building blocks around to create a game or animation. No code memorization required.

There are dozens of blocks in categories such as “sound” and “motion.” Stack them to create a program, just as if they were physical blocks. In addition to the cat, the program has a whole library of characters and background scenes or you can add your own. The website, Scratch.MIT.edu, sends you links to a starter project and other tutorials as soon as you register on the site. Joy animated her name and set it to music.

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