Kim Wilkens
Computer Science, Cross-Curricular
Material Type:
Activity/Lab, Lesson Plan
Upper Primary, Middle School
  • CS
  • Computer Science
  • VA
    Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike
    Media Formats:
    Downloadable docs, Video

    Education Standards

    Virtual Field Trip in Scratch

    Virtual Field Trip in Scratch


    This performance task is a computer science (CS) integration project where your students will take you on a virtual field trip. It can be to a museum, a historical site, a modern destination, a book, a planet or really anywhere. Along the way, they will incorporate CS concepts into their projects including sequences, conditionals, and events to add interactivity. This is a great project for students to share their research and learning from a wide variety of subject areas like social studies, language arts, world languages, history, etc. This unit includes 5th grade standards for the Virginia CS Standards of Learning, but it can easily be adapted for younger and older students. The latest resources for this project can be found at


    CS concepts covered

    storyboarding, iterative design, decomposition, citing sources, events, conditions, debugging, collaboration

    CS integration

    Any subject area

    What students will do

    • Design a virtual field trip through a storyboard

    • Debug and problem solve 

    • Provide feedback to each other and reflect

    What students will figure out

    • How to rely on peers for debugging support

    • How to make an engaging and interactive field trip

    • That they can demonstrate their learning in another subject area by creating tech

    Project at a Glance



    Lesson Summary



    45-60 min

    Make a plan

    Virtual Field Trip Planner 


    45-60 min

    Set up your sprites and backdrops



    Exit ticket


    45-60 min

    Use events to switch scenes & sprites

    Same as above


    45-60 min

    Use sensing to add interactivity

    Same as above


    45-60 min

    Test, debug and wrap-up

    Same as above


    45-60 min

    Feedback and reflect

    Sticky notes for feedback, a place for journaling whether online or on paper

    Materials preparation 

    Part 1


    Parts 2-5

    • Make sure Scratch is either installed or you/your students create accounts through an educator account in order for students to be able to save their work. Watch Scratch Desktop vs. Online video for more information.

    • If students are working in pairs, they will need to pick one account (online Scratch) or one computer (downloaded Scratch) to use through the duration of the project.

    • Some sort of exit ticket each day that can help you track engagement and troubleshoot problems.

    1 - Make a plan

    Create a prompt for the virtual field trip assignment. See example prompts created for an ancient Maya/Aztec/Inca civilizations virtual field trip assignment. Update and print out Virtual Field Trip plan.

    2 - Set up your sprites and backdrops

    Watch video tutorial and then work on gathering/creating your sprites & backdrop images.

    • Use Scratch paint tool or Piskel to create pixel image

    • Use google search to find images. Be sure to copy website URL into your Image Citations at the bottom of your planning doc

    • Add images into your Scratch project

    3 - Use events to switch scenes & sprites

    Finish gathering/creating images for your sprites & backdrop images. When you are done with that, watch the video tutorial and then start coding events into your project. You can find example code here.

    4 - Use sensing to add interactivity

    Finish working on switching scenes and sprites. When you are done with that, watch the video tutorial and then start coding interactively into your project. You can find example code here.

    5 - Test, debug and wrap up

    Wrap up your project by testing and debugging it. If you think you are done, find someone else who is too and give each other "I like" and "I wish" feedback. Be sure to be specific about the feedback, so it's easy to know what's working and what needs to be updated.

    6 - Feedback and Reflection

    Two important parts of creating a CS integration project is getting feedback and reflecting on the lessons learned. 

    Feedback prompts:

    Before starting the feedback session, spend a few minutes in a class discussion about feedback. What makes it useful? Specific and actionable. What makes it not useful? Generic and personal. 

    • I like ....

    • I wish ...

    Reflection prompts:

    • What did I find challenging about this project?

    • What went well for me with this project?

    • What could I improve the next time I do a project like this?