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Animated animals

Beginner | MakeCode, Python | LED display | Iteration, Sequence

Step 1: Make it

What is it?

Animate your own pictures on the micro:bit display.

duck image moving up and down on the micro:bit LED display

How it works

  • This program creates an animation on the micro:bit’s LED display output by using a built-in image and one you create yourself.
  • First it shows the duck built-in image and then shows a modified version, which is made by moving all the dots (pixels) down one row.
  • It shows the two different pictures one after the other, with a half second (500 millisecond) delay, to make it look like a duck bobbing up and down on the water.
  • An infinite loop keeps the micro:bit showing the image sequence until you unplug the micro:bit.
  • Using loops in computer programmes is also known as iteration. They help you create efficient compact code without needlessly repeating the same instructions.

What you need

  • micro:bit (or MakeCode simulator)
  • MakeCode or Python editor
  • battery pack (optional)
  • optional graph paper or LED planning sheet to sketch out your own animal designs

Step 2: Code it

1from microbit import *
3while True:
5    sleep(500)
7        "00000:"
8        "09900:"
9        "99900:"
10        "09999:"
11        "09990"))
12    sleep(500)

Step 3: Improve it

  • Try modifying and animating different built-in images like GIRAFFE and RABBIT.
  • Create your own images from scratch using graph paper or our LED planning sheet to sketch out your designs.
  • Make longer animated sequences to tell a story.
  • In Python, use different numbers to change the brightness of different pixels. 9 is the brightest, 1 is the dimmest and 0 is off.