[plt-scheme] Question on Teaching Scheme with DrScheme

From: Jens Axel Søgaard (jensaxel at soegaard.net)
Date: Tue Nov 5 15:38:08 EST 2002

Jerzy Karczmarczuk wrote:

> Jens Axel Søgaard wrote:
>>> On Thursday 31 October 2002 16:30, Lear, Russell wrote:  
>>>> My 12 year old daughter was looking over my shoulder while I was 
>>>> working on something in DrScheme. ...
>>>> Anyway, she's pretty excited over this and wants to learn more.  
>>>> Are there any resources people know of on teaching kids simple 
>>>> programming? 
>> Take a look at the turtles teachpack. It is very easy to make nice 
>> drawings quickly with it.
> Somebody else also mentioned Papert and the Logo business.
> Well, if it works (knock on my head), << tant mieux >>. But I know some
> failures as well. And in my very humble opinion the Logo language itself
> is a pedagogic calamity, inhomogeneous and ugly. The purified Scheme
> version, frankly, seems nicer... - but still, a mixture of imperative
> and functional constructs may not be as digestible as we would wish.
> If what you really would use are mainly imperative constructs, FORWARD,
> TURN, etc., why use Scheme at all?

If the goal is to figure out whether she wants to learn more or not, I think
the turtle package with a few extra primitives would do a good job.

  - the abstraction level is low
  - you get drawings fast
  - you learn about geometry

If the interest last then I would introduce her to HTDP.

Jens Axel Søgaard

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