Tag Archives: python

How do I Use Python on Chromebooks? Trinket and TechnoTurtle

You may wonder, “How do I use Python on Chromebooks?” There are many web-based apps, but most work if the program contains only Python code. They tend to limit the use of many Python libraries.

However, if you are teaching young programmers then the Turtle Library is important. The Turtle module can be used to create artwork and design games. It requires a graphic interface that will display output on a canvas. One web-based option is Trinket.

What Is Trinket?

Trinket is web-based coding environment designed for education. The platform can be used to develop programs using Python, HTML, and Java. Subscribers can save their files called “trinkets” online. Non-subscribers can still use the Trinket platform to write code. However, at the end of a programming session, they must download the program to save it. Later, the file can be uploaded to continue editing the code.

Trinket Is Ideal for Young Programmers

The programming lessons in TechnoTurtle published by TechnoKids Inc. were written for IDLE Python 3. IDLE is Python’s Integrated Development and Learning Environment. This software includes a Python text editor, Python Shell that interprets code, plus a graphic interface that displays a canvas. IDLE Python 3 will run on Windows, Linux/Unix, and Mac OS X operating systems.

The latest version of IDLE Python makes programming easier for children to learn. At this time, there is not a web-based IDLE Python version for Chromebook users. For this reason, Trinket is a great web-based coding option for educators interested in introducing Python to young children.

python and trinket

How do I Use Python on Chromebooks? Use Trinket, which is a web-based coding environment.

How Can I Use the TechnoTurtle STEM Project with Trinket?

If you are using the TechnoKids Inc. STEM project TechnoTurtle, follow the instructions below to get started with Trinket. You will use the Pygame option to build programs. Refer to the tips at the bottom of this article to help teach TechnoTurtle.

How Do I Use Python on Chromebooks?

You may be wondering, how do I use Python on Chromebooks? One solution is to use Trinket.

  1. Visit trinket.
  2. If you are using Chromebooks with your students they will all have a Google account. Look around the Home page to find the Sign in with Google option.
  3. Once signed in, click your username to display a menu.
  4. Select New Trinket and then pick Pygame.
  5. how do I use Python on chromebooks

    Select Pygame to build a program using the Turtle Library.

  6. Write the code in the left pane. Click Run to see the result in the right pane.
  7. Use Trinket to program using Python and the Turtle Library.

  8. If necessary, click Stop.
  9. If your students cannot complete their program (and they are not subscribers), they can copy the text to Google Doc file for safekeeping. Another option is to download the file. To do this click on the three lines. From the menu, select Download. Give the file a suitable name and then click Save. The file will be zipped. You will need to unzip the file to access the Python.py program.
  10. To continue working on the file, you can paste the text onto the Main tab or Upload the text file (see tip below).

Tips to Using TechnoTurtle with Trinket

If you purchased TechnoTurtle and you use Chromebooks, you may wonder, “How do I Use Python with TechnoTurtle on Chromebooks?” A few of the instructions in TechnoTurtle will require modification when using Trinket instead of IDLE Python. However, almost every lesson will work perfectly. Below are some tips to using TechnoTurtle with Trinket:

  • Stop the Canvas from Becoming Blank: After you run a program in Trinket the canvas can appear empty. To be able to see your work, add exitonclick() to the last line of the program. This will keep the image or game in view.
  • Upload Background or Stamp Images: Picture files can be used as a background or turtle shape. When using IDLE Python, the Python.py file and picture files must be in the same folder. When teaching using Trinket, you must upload the file using View and Add Images. You must then select the file and click Done to attach it to the program.

    Upload picture files to use them as background images or Turtle shapes.

  • Get to Know the Trinket Canvas Size: The Trinket canvas is smaller than the IDLE Python canvas. The Trinket canvas is about 350 pixels wide by 400 pixels high. Whereas the IDLE Python canvas by default is about 600 pixels wide by 600 pixels high. To view your work easily you may need to reduce the values used for the coordinates. For example, use goto(-175, 200) to reach the top left edge; goto(175, 200) to reach the top right edge; goto(175, -200) to reach the bottom right edge; and goto(-175, -200) to reach the bottom left edge.
  • canvas

    To place objects on the canvas you need to plot the x and y coordinates.


  • Use the Trinket Resources: TechnoKids has recreated the Python templates, Python examples, and images to fit the Trinket canvas. They are in a Trinket folder. Use them instead.
  • Picture Files Used for Stamps Need to Be Small: Since the Trinket canvas is smaller, if you want to add a picture file to the Turtle shape list the image should be a maximum of 50 x 50. This looks better when adding multiple stamps.
  • Keep Movement Below 375 Steps: To keep the Turtle on the screen it is a good idea to limit forward and backward commands below 375. For example forward(450) will move the turtle symbol out of view.
  • Divide the Values in TechnoTurtle by Half: Almost every assignment in TechnoTurtle will work with Trinket with no modification. A few of the activities do provide sample coordinates or movements. These might be too large to see on the canvas. In those cases, take each number and cut it in half. If the value is forward(200) make it forward(100). This will quickly make the sample scripts work.
  • Reduce the Font Size to Fit Text on the Canvas: Given that the Trinket canvas is smaller than the IDLE Python canvas, you will want to use font size 12 or less. This will allow you to fit more words on the screen. For example, write(“Add a message to the canvas.”, font=(“Arial”, 12, bold))
  • Have Patience With Input Boxes: If you want to store a player’s answer as a variable you must be patient when playing the game. It takes time for the cursor to show in the box.
  • Upload a Template or Saved File: Subscribers can easily save or open Python files. However, non-subscribers cannot. If you are not quite sure if you want to commit to a Trinket subscription just yet, you might need to copy the code to the Main tab to run it.
  • Do Not Set the Canvas Window Title: In IDLE Python, programmers can customize the title bar. This looks great on a large screen. However, in Trinket the frame around the window is very tiny. Do not bother using the code title(“Text in the title bar”). It does not generate an error, but you also cannot see anything.
  • Notice that Color-Coding is Different: Words in a program are often color-coded. This makes the code easier to read, write, and debug. The color scheme in Trinket is different than IDLE Python. For example, comments are green instead of red.
  • Speed Differences are Not as Noticeable: The speed of the turtle can be set to slowest, slow, normal, fast, and fastest. The difference between the speeds often cannot be seen in Trinket. For this reason, it is best to use either speed(“slowest”) or speed(“fastest”).
  • Line Number Errors are Not Clickable: In the IDLE Python Shell, error messages with line numbers are clickable. This takes you right away to the problem in the code. Trinket’s error messages do not have clickable links. Instead, programmers must read the line number in the error message and then find it in the code.
  • Use the Chrome Web Browser: If you are using a Chromebook, you are using the Chrome web browser. However, for anyone using Trinket on a different device, be certain to use Chrome. Trinket will work better. The screen tends to scale larger and there is less hesitation when running the code.

Python Programming Activities for Kids

Are you looking for Python programming activities for kids? Great news! TechnoKids Inc. has just released TechnoTurtle. This project is ideal for elementary and middle school students new to text-based programming languages. The lessons use Python and the Turtle library of commands to teach computer science concepts.

python programming activities for kids

Introduce programming to beginners with Python and the Turtle library of commands.

Build Original Creations Using Programming Activities for Kids

Empower your students to become programmers! Instead of using instructional materials that promote the mindless copying of scripts to write programs, teach with lessons that emphasize exploration and experimentation. TechnoTurtle gradually introduces programming concepts that are then applied to code original creations.

In the TechnoTurtle project, students become programmers. They follow step-by-step instructions to build programs that solve mazes, create artwork, and play games. The fun begins when students edit code to gain an understanding of the structure of Python scripts. Once familiar with basic concepts, students are introduced to debugging, loops, variables, and conditional logic. Ignite an interest in programming with meaningful activities designed for beginners.

About the TechnoTurtle Python Project

The TechnoTurtle project has everything you need to introduce Python programming to your students in Grades 3-8. It is jam-packed full of programming activities for kids:

  • 30 Coding Assignments – The assignments are divided into six Sessions. Each Session targets a different coding project and programming skill. The Sessions gradually progress in difficulty, with students transferring their skills to new tasks.
  • 5 Programming Reviews – The programming review questions include fill-in-the-blank, true or false, multiple choice, or short answer. They assess knowledge of Python, Turtle commands, and debugging techniques. The files are customizable allowing teachers to add, delete, or edit the content.
  • 5 Skill Reviews – The skill reviews have students apply their programming knowledge to build a program. The activities use the same skills taught within the Session in a novel way. This provides an opportunity to solidify learning.
  • 6 Extension Activities – The extension activities challenge students to extend their knowledge of Python programming. The enrichment activities introduce new skills and computer science concepts. They are ideal for students who have a keen interest in coding and want to do more.
  • Assessment Tools – The project includes multiple methods of assessment to evaluate coding projects. The materials include self-assessment checklists, peer review checklists, coding journal reflection, marking sheets, and a summary of skills. All files are customizable.

Helpful Python Resources Support Learning

  • Python Templates – To jump start learning TechnoTurtle has several templates that invite young programmers to edit code. This allows them to gain an understanding of how scripts are constructed. It also encourages them to actively discover ways to alter output by changing values. In addition, by “breaking” existing code they explore debugging techniques to find and fix errors.
  • Python Examples – TechnoTurtle includes sample files for all programs developed in the project. These files can be used to demonstrate the final product as a source of inspiration. Furthermore, they can also be used as an answer key or reference point when assisting students with their own original creations.
  • Python and Turtle Reference Files – Helpful resources support learning. TechnoTurtle includes a reference sheet that summarizes Python functions and Turtle commands at a glance. A Turtle canvas worksheet helps students plot x and y coordinates to place objects. Moreover, a Color Names file provides an easy way to customize coding projects to enhance the overall design.
  • and more!
  • programming and looping

    Loop a set of instructions to design colorful artwork.

    Programming Activities for Kids – TechnoTurtle Sessions

    The TechnoTurtle project has Python programming activities for kids. The assignments are divided into six Sessions:

    Session 1 – Python, Turtles, and Bugs

    In session 1, students become programmers. To start they learn how the programming language Python is used in daily life. Next, they visit the Turtle library to study the commands and make predictions about their function. They test their ideas by modifying a program to control what it draws. Once familiar with how to run a Python program, students add bugs to the code. This allows them to identify and fix common errors.

    Session 2 – Conquer the Maze

    In session 2, students control the movement of a Turtle through a series of mazes. The fun begins when the young programmers write their first script. It marches a Turtle around the screen by moving forwards, backwards, and turning. Once they have mastered this set of commands, students are challenged to develop a script that will guide a Turtle through a maze. Can they solve the puzzle?

    Session 3 – Draw Pictures

    In session 3, students write code to draw pictures. To start, they learn how to plot a point on the canvas using x and y coordinates. They apply this knowledge to stamp a unique design. Next, the young programmers follow instructions to design a robot by combining lines, rectangles, circles, dots, and symbols. Once familiar with how to control the Turtle’s drawing tools, students build their own program to draw a picture.

    Session 4 – Design Colorful Spirographs

    In session 4, students paint stunning artwork. To start, they learn code that repeats a set of instructions forever or for a specific number of times. Next, they complete a series of exercises to discover how to construct looping geometric shapes called spirographs. Once students are familiar with designing patterns, they use the Random library to produce colorful creations.

    Session 5 – Create a Mad Lib Generator

    In session 5, students design a word game, called a Mad Lib. It has players provide a list of words that are used to complete a silly sentence or story. To prepare for this coding task, students learn about variables by chatting with the computer. Next, they edit a Mad Lib party invitation to discover how to join variables and text together to form sentences. Once familiar with the structure of the code, they program their own wacky word game.

    Session 6 – Invent a Carnival Game

    In session 6, students become game designers. They combine Python and Turtle programming commands to produce a Carnival Game. To start, they learn about if, elif, and else. Once familiar with conditional logic they invent a game that prompts the player to pick an option to win a prize. Optional challenges enrich the design such as looping a flashing message or showing a picture of their winnings. Get ready for fun! Step right up to win a prize!