[OT] Teaching methodology

Roger Eller roger.e.eller at sealedair.com
Wed Aug 12 09:41:16 EDT 2015

<like> +1 </like>

On Wed, Aug 12, 2015 at 8:51 AM, Mark Schonewille <
m.schonewille at economy-x-talk.com> wrote:

> 1) A course can be systematic yet playful. The teacher needs to stick to a
> number of principles and a plan, but the children should just have fun and
> learn something.
> 2) When I create software, I do this with the skills I already possess.
> When I run into a problem, I enhance my skills until I can solve the
> problem. As a programmer, I am always ready to learn something new. If it
> is required to solve the problem, I'll learn a (to me) entirely new
> language.
> 3) Programmers want to work efficiently. If they decide to invest time
> into learning something new, they are already out of their comfort zone.
> However, if this is about the parents of the children you teach, you have a
> problem. These parents don't want to take the time to learn something new
> and they don't need to, but their children do.
> Do people really think that the world may fall apart, if everybody could
> suddenly make their own programmes? Until the late 1980s, everybody was
> forced to figure out programming by himself, because a) there were no
> specialized schools for this and b) the internet was only barely available.
> People went to computer clubs and everybody who was interested could not
> only make his or her own software, but also build his or her own computer!
> Did the world fall apart? No!
> I think you need to convince the parents that the world has changed. Not
> only has programming become easier, programming is now everywhere in our
> daily life and has become a required skill. Not only because some people
> might want to become a "programmer", but also because people need to be
> able to understand an error message on the computer, think logically when
> programming the microwave or DVR/PVR/STB, and be careful and precise when
> entering a key on the website of their bank. It would be ludicrous to think
> that everyone first would have to learn C++ to acquire these skills.
> I know a toddler who can't even talk yet, but uses pictures on a mobile
> phone to show what she likes to eat and then goes to Youtube to listen to
> her favourite music. In fact, I know several examples like this one. These
> people are not going to need programming languages the way we do now, but
> we need to offer them some framework within which they can develop their
> skills. 4GL's may offer this framework, together with Arduino's, Raspberry
> Pies, and who knows what else we'll see in the near future.
> --
> Best regards,
> Mark Schonewille

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