Browsing All Posts published on »April, 2014«

The Khan Academy Experience, continued

April 28, 2014


I’m evaluated “OERs” — open educational resources — at   It’s a pretty awesome site and idea — share good sites, and evaluate them and share the knowledge. I found a pretty nifty lesson on area and perimeter, and was pretty happy at how Sal Khan presented area with color pictures with tiles that […]

Focus! FOcus!

April 26, 2014


(yea, one of those F words…) It’s closing in on the end of the semester… it’s Saturday but no bicycle ride because it’s Illinois Marathon day. I didn’t go out and holler at runners, even (the route’s a few blocks away).    My attempt at an app… well, I abandoned hope of getting anything to […]


April 21, 2014


So, after doing the conceptual framework building of recursions… today we went over the text example that is essentially a template for our lab.  (edit in hindsight:  this was posted days after I typed it.  We had class on Thursday, not Easter Sunday ;)) Had he mentioned this, I would have spent considerably less time […]

Memorizing Before Understanding

April 15, 2014


This recursion thing has been a great example of when a person does *not* have to understand a procedure before practicing it and drilling in it.   Dear person defending your approach to teaching:   if you tell me that students can’t really learn by memorizing first, then you’ve just flushed your credibility down the […]

86 again~

April 11, 2014


I’ll see at two when answers get posted which ones I missed… will they be the ones I wasn’t sure of?  Yes, I was thinking of recursiveness on the ride home, too 😉   More, though, of the niftiness of a teacher working to make challenging content accessible; not easier in the long run, but […]

More o’ that concept stuff…

April 10, 2014


So today’s topic was “recursion” — and he walked us through really.  simple.   examples.   of it.    I stumbled over recursion in my JavaScript class, when I wanted to display exponents and was googling for tips for putting that in, in animated form.   I’m curious as to how challenging my uniquely wired […]

Random nonsense

April 7, 2014


Just another example of “real world” word problems that have nothing to do with the real world, and are actually and obviously convoluted wrappings of algebra in words.    I fully understand the value of making the connection between linear equations and real world situations.  However, this one leaves students cold and nauseous. Been too […]

build, build, build

April 4, 2014


When I’m working away at a program, I tend to talk to it. With my fingers.   I try to remember to clear ’em out… but at the bottom of Lab 8 was // build build build, a note reminding myself to be constructive *especially* when I was frustrated…  grateful it was one of my […]

Proper Struggle Preparation

April 4, 2014


Yesterday’s lecture in Java II was, I think, an excellent example of When It Would Be Wrong To Make People Struggle (and he didn’t).   We’re learning about exceptions, a.k.a. errors in programs.   Essentially, this is a fairly complex set of ideas that, if put together nicely, hang together well.   If not, things […]


April 2, 2014


I hadn’t planned it, but my four submissions for the phase three of the apps project are the stuff that makes teachers happy, to wit: It occurred to me riding home that since this sequence of courses is online, a cohort of people from *anywhere* could sign up with the plan of getting the skills through […]