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Top Tips for Teaching Computer Science

Discussion in 'Computing and ICT' started by edulitolearn, Sep 5, 2018.

  1. edulitolearn

    edulitolearn New commenter

    1. Make use of what is happening in the news – Every day there is a new tech story. Where possible make the tech news item part of your lesson, particularly where there is a specific link to the specification that you are teaching.

    2. When you are teaching programming theory, integrate practical elements into the lesson so that students can make the connection between the theory and its application. Start with simple applications and work your way to more complex applications.

    3. Encourage students to write algorithms/programs in pairs. Students can feel quite isolated especially when you have asked them to solve a problem. This often works best if you have a more able student paired with a less able student. Make sure that they swap places so that each of them has an opportunity to control the paper/device that they are using.

    Do you have any top tips?
  2. elder_cat

    elder_cat Established commenter

    Have a stash of resources available that the more able students can access independently. That allows you the time to physically get around the classroom and support the less able ones, without the more capable students becoming bored and restless and going off piste.
  3. ianryder1

    ianryder1 New commenter

    Thanks, starting new secondary teaching role on Monday so any more pearls of wisdom greatly appreciated :)
  4. madcat

    madcat Occasional commenter

    In my experience students, particularly very able ones, absolutely hate paired work particularly if you've put them with others of radically different ability (or work ethic). and I have spent far too much of my time over the decades dealing with my tutor group's classroom and relationship problems caused by this and this alone in a wide variety of subjects

    Even the paired work evangelists state that students should be paired with others of similar ability. If you insist on instigating this very much under researched and unproven method then you need to think very carefully about the pairs and the rest of the methodology you use with this set up
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2018
    SundaeTrifle and elder_cat like this.
  5. kritisharma1

    kritisharma1 New commenter

    The most important thing is that you have to be updated always because in every day or you can say in every minute there are lots of inventions and updations are coming in the computer field.
  6. JaquesJaquesLiverot

    JaquesJaquesLiverot Established commenter

    I've started to collate useful news stories:

    For "high transfer" skills, such as programming, worked examples are helpful - I'm working on a set of sample solutions for the tasks in the OCR Coding Challenges booklet: https://www.advanced-ict.info/programming/OCR_coding_challenges.html

    Finally, don't forget psychology and other aspects of evidence-based practice - e.g. don't get students to create a model of the fetch-execute cycle from egg boxes and string unless you're sure that it's going to help: https://www.advanced-ict.info/theory/learning.html
    binaryhex likes this.
  7. JaquesJaquesLiverot

    JaquesJaquesLiverot Established commenter

    That's much more true of ICT - Computer Science is now quite a mature subject. The current GCSE includes many of the things that I learnt at school in the 80s - the fetch-execute cycle was invented in 1945, Quicksort and TCP/IP were invented in the 1960s, etc.
    SundaeTrifle likes this.

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