I recently discovered Vi Hart‘s videos which combine math and art, among other things, in a pretty exciting and engaging format. After watching her latest video, Spirals, Fibonacci, and Being a Plant, I instantly wanted to try creating some of my own math art. Due to my shaky hands and my never ending search for engaging assignments I decided to turn to Scratch.
My approach to the code is straight forward and uses the same technique that Vi describes in her video, with the exception that I worked my way in as opposed to working my way out (as in Vi’s video), mostly due to the side effects of Stamp in Scratch.
One slightly hidden feature in Scratch that is needed in this project is the ability to set the center of rotation of a costume. To do this, click Edit costume, and then click on the + next to Set costume center. This will allow you to set the center to the bottom of the leaf in the program.
This will make a great future lesson in an Introduction to Computer Science class for any age group as students can extend the project in many directions, including multiple flowers of varying sizes and colors. Note: this looks much cleaner if you download it and run it locally.