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(hh) discussed with a school teacher.

(hh) discussed with a school teacher.

From:
Данил Хармсыч
Date:
2010-07-13 @ 05:16
I discussed HacketyHack today with a (secondary) school computer
science teacher. The discussion was very fruitful; a short summary
follows.

1. Russian school teachers, as a rule, are very conservative and will
say 'no' to any innovation. However, there are a few communities of
more progressive and neophile pedagogues.
2. The school curriculum is also very limiting. Firstly, information
science course have little school hours allocated for it, and further,
only fraction of it are programming lessons proper. Secondly, there
are only three complusory programming languages to choose from, namely
C, Pascal and Basic. So, other languages can be studied only
extracurricularly.
3. Hence, the initial focus of HacketyHack popularization should be
external to mainstream school education: hobbyist children (and
adults), progressive parents and teachers, professional programmers
interested in skill transfer. With luck and time, (hh) community can
become a lobby group for modernization of computer science education
is schools.
4. Programming contests prove effective in attracting and stimulating
programming hobbyists. But who can fund these? (e.g. universities,
software companies)
5. There may be already children's informal communities dedicated to
the study of programming, in Internet and locally. If this is a case,
we should cooperate with them.
6. (afterthought) One of established forms of programming hobbyist
culture is demoscene. Maybe some people in it will be interested in
cooperation, too.
7. Learning environment should be compemented with sound methodology.
We already have some of it in form of _why's lessons, but this is not
enough. At very least, fundamental algorithms and data structures
should be covered.
8. Learning should be immediately useful. This is the best motivation,
and could be only one in case of self-learning.
9. Age psychology should be taken into account. For example, there can
be different version, say, for early starters (10 years and earlier),
suited better for their motivation and learning patterns.
10. (hh) community can benefit from inclusion of experts in pedagogy,
child psychology, ergonomics etc.

Also, a local enthusiast in programming study by children was
recommended to me, so I am looking forward v1.0 to show and discuss
with him :)

Re: [hacketyhack] (hh) discussed with a school teacher.

From:
Steve Klabnik
Date:
2010-07-13 @ 14:48
Awesome! Thanks for doing this!


> 1. Russian school teachers, as a rule, are very conservative and will
> say 'no' to any innovation. However, there are a few communities of
> more progressive and neophile pedagogues.
>

I think this happens inside of any established organization, really. You'll
always have the innovators and the laggards; it's just part of life.


> 2. The school curriculum is also very limiting. Firstly, information
> science course have little school hours allocated for it, and further,
> only fraction of it are programming lessons proper. Secondly, there
> are only three complusory programming languages to choose from, namely
> C, Pascal and Basic. So, other languages can be studied only
> extracurricularly.
>

Seems pretty similar to what happens here.


> 3. Hence, the initial focus of HacketyHack popularization should be
> external to mainstream school education:


Absolutely agree here.


>  With luck and time, (hh) community can
> become a lobby group for modernization of computer science education
> is schools.
>

This would be fantastic.


> 4. Programming contests prove effective in attracting and stimulating
> programming hobbyists. But who can fund these? (e.g. universities,
> software companies)
>

A good observation


> 5. There may be already children's informal communities dedicated to
> the study of programming, in Internet and locally. If this is a case,
> we should cooperate with them.
>

Quite true. The closest is MIT Scratch: http://scratch.mit.edu/

It uses Smalltalk with a pretty crazy IDE/website setup, very similar to
Hackety.


> 6. (afterthought) One of established forms of programming hobbyist
> culture is demoscene. Maybe some people in it will be interested in
> cooperation, too.
>

Hm, I didn't think about this before! Shoes certainly has good graphical
capabilities, so I wonder if the demoscenesters would be interested... it
seems like a lot of them are interested in ASM coding only, though. Amazing
graphics with tiny binaries seems to be their goal...


> 7. Learning environment should be compemented with sound methodology.
> We already have some of it in form of _why's lessons, but this is not
> enough. At very least, fundamental algorithms and data structures
> should be covered.
>

Yeah, we had talked about this before. If we want Hackety to be a serious
teaching tool, then these need to be developed.

I personally see separate 'tracks' evolving out of Hackety, with the _why
lessons being the initial light, easy, lessons. There could then be
intermediate lessons that focus on CS fundamentals, and advanced classes
that cover more advanced topics.


> 8. Learning should be immediately useful. This is the best motivation,
> and could be only one in case of self-learning.
>

Another great observation; one of the key goals with the design of the
hackety library is 'do cool things in one line.' You've gotta make it super
simple so that people can get hooked!


> 9. Age psychology should be taken into account. For example, there can
> be different version, say, for early starters (10 years and earlier),
> suited better for their motivation and learning patterns.
>

Yeah. I think this ties into the 'tracks' concept above.


> 10. (hh) community can benefit from inclusion of experts in pedagogy,
> child psychology, ergonomics etc.
>

Yep. Gotta have something built first, though.


> Also, a local enthusiast in programming study by children was
> recommended to me, so I am looking forward v1.0 to show and discuss
> with him :)
>

Awesome! That'd be great. I'd love to hear some feedback.