Monday, September 17, 2018

Learn to Code Your First Android App with AppInventor

There are loads of 'learn to code' resources on the web but it can be difficult to find something you can put to work right away to teach yourself or others. A while back I dove deep into the MIT AppInventor site to build an Intro to Apps course for middle school. I have presented a portion of it as one or a series of sessions at the AppsEvents Summits Feel free to use the presentation as it has directions for building two simple apps using the AppInventor interface on a Chromebook or Laptop.  You can also install the MIT Companion App on your Android & sync it run/test the app as you build. 
The sense of accomplishment and motivation you get from this is similar to what you might get coding 'tangibles' but with no cost or space requirements. Everything is FREE you just need devices.

Slides for Learning or Facilitating

This slide deck you can follow the directions or facilitate a workshop. In less than an hour you can code 'Hello Purr' and 'Magic Ball' which both young and old seem to get really psyched about when they see it work.

FAQ's

Q. Are there any network requirements?
A. Yes, you need to be on the same WIFI and it cannot block network traffic. I've had trouble presenting this at some schools and had to have everyone connect to my own mobile wifi.

Q. What if I don't have Android devices to test on?
A. There is an install for an 'emulator' you can put on your 'computer' which puts a little phone screen on your desktop that will since with the program and you can test it out that way.

Q. Is there an IOS version?
A. Yes, there is a new program called Thunkable that you can work with, I don't have the directed posted for the above through Thunkable but you should check it out. It's free.


Extended Learning

If you do this and want to have some more fun, level up and make the PONG App! The directions can be found at allisonmollica.com > Presentations > My First Android App at the bottom of the page. Happy Coding!



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