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A literature review revealed that students learning computational thinking (CT) via Scratch often require substantial teacher support. We surveyed grade 6-9 teachers to learn their perceptions of student engagement with CT and how well their needs are met by existing CT learning systems. The results led us to extend the trend of balancing Scratch’s agency with structure to better serve learners and reduce burden on teachers aiming to learn and teach CT. In this paper, we review architecture and implementation strategies developed to integrate Parsons Programming Puzzles (PPPs) with Scratch, and then analyze their effects on adults, who crucially influence the education of their children. The results from our pilot study suggest PPPs catalyze CT motivation, reduce extraneous cognitive load, and increase learning efficiency without jeopardizing performance on transfer tasks.
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