Image by dendari via FlickrThe 2010 K12 Online Conference (blocked in district) just ended. The most useful presentation I saw was this one by Chris Betcher, about using scratch in the classroom. He has a little more information and the complete 20 minute presentation on his web site (open to the district) and some further information on a wiki. (also open to the district) After about two minutes into the video I think you will find that programming in Scratch is not only easy, but can really enhance learning.
Scratch is a simple programming language developed by MIT specifically to help middle school and high school student learn math and computer programming. If your students find Scratch too easy or want to stretch their wings they can also try Alice. Originally developed by Randy Pausch at Carnegie Mellon University.
Scratch and Alice are separate free downloadable computer programs. However, I am assuming that if requested it can be downloaded and installed on your computer.