Enjoying half term and the chance to just play. A game of Mountain Hockey this morning, a spot of domestication this afternoon, before playing with MSWLOGO and Microsoft Paint this evening.
Having got my substitution procedure for making a polygon working yesterday, at Andy's suggestion I added another attribute to alter polygon side length so the polygon procedure now looks like this...
to polygon :SIDES :LENGTH
REPEAT :SIDES [FD :LENGTH RT 360/:SIDES]
I can now change the type of regular polygon I draw and its side lengths too.
What this means is I no longer need to tell LOGO to draw a particular polygon, However I do need to know its properties, in terms of the number of sides and angles I want it to have, and to decide how large I would like it to be, before I can input these for the turtle to do the hard work of drawing it.
I decided to just play with what I had for the time being and to make a pattern using my polygon procedure and a simple repeat routine, inputting several pentagons that gradually increase in side length before turning through 36 degrees.
Experiences, working with y4 students making "flowers" tell me that this is what they tend to do and get excited by when we explore the environment, having compiled and saved their static polygon procedures, and why not its fun and exciting to see what the turtle draws when he has been programmed.
In this instance the procedure I asked the turtle to carry out looked like this
repeat 10 [polygon 5 50 polygon 5 100 polygon 5 150 polygon 5 200 polygon 5 250 rt 36]
And this was the resultant pattern.
When the turtle had finished and put his feet up, I saved the workspace as a "bitmap image," and then opened it in Microsoft Paint. Again in work I have carried out with students this is a task they love to do. Using the "fill tools" with the Bitmap created in MSWLOGO, students are able to colour the repeating patterns made, and the design you can see at the top of this post was created in this way.
When I set out to create the pattern, I originally set myself the pattern rule, to use only 2 colours, and fill the design so that no 2 shapes in the pattern that touched or were adjacent to each other would be the same colour. However as I moved outward from the centre of the pattern, I reached a point where it was not possible to follow the rule, so I needed to introduce a third colour.
I am really enjoying this free piece of software and looking forward not only to exploring it further, but looking at how the processes I have missed out on by not engaging more deeply with it, can be applied to my play with the Probot I have brought home with me this week. I am also beginning to reflect on how the use of prewritten procedures might facilitate and support investigational work and consolidation activities in Mathematics sessions around the properties of shape and measure, as well as extension and challenge for more able students in ICT sessions as suggested by previous comments by Andy. Thanks