Happy New Year

January 3, 2012 at 3:55 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

I am excited as the New Year begins. New thoughts, new ideas, fresh beginnings always make things seem so much brighter.

As I start school tomorrow, I spent a good bit of today trying to decide what I wanted to teach this semester in CS Principles. One of course is to complete all the details in the “Big ideas”.  All the computational thinking practices as outlined are constantly practiced in the class. It is almost a style of teaching and it has been very successful. I will continue it this semester also.

Another goal is to get at least 50% of the CS Principles students ready for taking the programming AP Computer Science in Java. APCS, as it is today is a fourth science. And students want to take this to satisfy their science requirement.  The leap from Scratch to Java programming is hard for many students. I will need an intermediate language environment as a stepping stone.  Greenfoot is my choice. I think it will work very well for all my students: those who are planning on taking the AP and others who don’t.

I plan to introduce Greenfoot very soon and then keep revisiting the environment the entire semester.

It all starts tomorrow!

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  1. You might also consider Processing. It’s Java and conveniently offers a build-in graphics library so students can quickly see something visual. Keep us updated!

    • I did look into Processing. Many students from the CS Principles class want to take the AP Computer Science in Java course. Greenfoot seemed to be an appropriate tool that would make a transition easier and introduce students to classes. I did like the graphics support that Processing provides.


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