[plt-scheme] Teaching Scheme

From: Jos Koot (jos.koot at telefonica.net)
Date: Mon May 3 09:54:16 EDT 2010

What has to be teached depends on your audience and your goals. If your
audience consists of people aiming to be professional programmers or IT
engeneers, I think your goal should be, in principle, to teach them ALL
languages (assemblers included) plus a good deal of arithmetics and
mathematics. Is it possible to learn all languages? For a normal person, of
course not. But what you can do is to give insight in different levels and
approaches to computing and how these levels and approaches are related to
paradigmas. If my presumptions are correct,. Scheme is a good choice to
start with, I think, for it allows programming in all sorts of paradigmas.
As an example: I remember well that as a consultant (long ago) a COBOL
programmer came to me with a program that did not work correctly. I knew
almost nothing of COBOL, but within 5 minutes the problem was solved just by
asking the costumer what he was trying to do. At first the customer did not
trust my having no profound knowledge of COBOL. Just ask questions: what do
you want and what do you expect (something like HtDP's method avant la
lettre) Yes, the customer found the answer to his problem by himself just by
being pressed to think about what he wanted and expected.


From: plt-scheme-bounces at list.cs.brown.edu
[mailto:plt-scheme-bounces at list.cs.brown.edu] On Behalf Of Samuel Williams
Sent: 03 May 2010 14:18
To: plt-scheme at list.cs.brown.edu
Subject: [plt-scheme] Teaching Scheme

Dear Friends,

I'm looking for some help from the Scheme community. I hope this is the
right place to ask for information.

I'm putting together a website aimed at high school students and teachers,
and would like to make sure the following page is as good as possible:


In particular, "Why would I learn this language?" section needs to have a
few paragraphs. I don't use Scheme so I hoped that you could provide the
main reasons why Scheme is a language someone would want to learn about.

It would also be great if someone could rewrite the Scheme source code
example so that it is as close as possible to the C implementation:


I understand that Scheme is very different from C, and uses different
paradigms, so it doesn't have to be identical, however it would be great if
it worked in generally the same way. It would be great if you could include
comments explaining how it works and what is happening (like the C example).

Any other suggestions or ideas for the Scheme page would be fantastic, and
any suggestions to other pages in general is also very helpful.


Kind regards,
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