[racket] review my tutorial?

From: Daniel Prager (daniel.a.prager at gmail.com)
Date: Thu Aug 1 21:03:46 EDT 2013

Hi Grant

My son is in the target demographic, I've been teaching him a bit of
Racket, and he's a Minecraft fiend.

If a new tutorial was available, especially one which is cross-platform as
well as R. Pi, we'd give it a whirl.

Meanwhile, you're Montessorians might enjoy my Turtle graphics in Racket:




On Fri, Aug 2, 2013 at 5:07 AM, Matthias Felleisen <matthias at ccs.neu.edu>wrote:

> Grant,
> I read your building tower's tutorial and I really like the idea of
> motivating programming for children with something like Minecraft, which
> seem to like. Since we already have a decent outreach program for this
> level, please consider creating a Minecraft-Racket bridge. Our approach to
> teaching programming emphasizes transfer of skills between programming and
> math. Traditional programming skills do not transfer, because of low-level
> obstacles ('x = x + 1' just isn't an equation and when you solve it you get
> '0 = 1') to high-level obstacles (what's a 'while' loop in mathematics).
> So we prefer a functional approach because it definitely benefits children
> and it scales all the way to serious software.
> One way to go about this is to hook up Minecraft to what we call the
> 2htdp/universe teachpack, specifically the world form. There are two
> strategies:
>  -- modify 2htdp/universe so that handlers can output Minecraft commands
> (and the world-universe library interprets it for them) + add a handler
> that can deal with signals from Minecraft
>  -- leave 2htdp/universe alone but set up a world that communicates with a
> local universe that can receives S-expressions from the students' world and
> interprets them and turns signals from Minecraft into messages for the world
> I have used the second strategy to connect a brain-wave headset with world
> (big-bang).
> Another way to go about it is to connect Marketplace (a Racket-embedded
> programming language) to your Minecraft API. See the package server.
> Marketplace is available from there. This is probably easier and it is good
> enough for one of us to do the rest.
> Let us know about your progress and we can also help evaluate your
> World/BigBang tutorials.
> Nice work!! -- Matthias
> On Jul 30, 2013, at 2:34 PM, grant centauri <gcentauri at lincolnix.net>
> wrote:
> > hello all,
> >
> > i wrote a programming tutorial which connects Common Lisp to the
> Minecraft Pi edition, attempting to illustrate recursion through the
> process of building a tower.
> >
> > after publishing it on my personal site, I realized no one was likely to
> ready it, and even if they did, it seemed unlikely that CL would be a good
> choice for my audience.
> >
> > I have been considering rewriting the tutorial in Racket (someone from
> this list pointed me to an already written library for the API), but I am
> pretty isolated in my pursuit of programming.  I work with children at a
> montessori school, and have been learning programming as a hobby in the
> hopes of offering rudimentary skills to kids who might be interested.
>  Minecraft + Raspberry Pi seemed like a good option to try something out.
>  It would be nice if some of you programmers and educators out there
> wouldn't mind reviewing my current article and maybe offering some critique
> so I can improve on it?  This list seems to be the best programming
> community I can find so I thought I would ask.  Sorry it is in a foreign
> dialect, but it is fairly simple.
> >
> > here it is on the web:
> >
> > http://www.lincolnix.net/gcentauri/build-tower.html
> >
> > thank you for considering!
> >
> > -grant
> > ____________________
> >  Racket Users list:
> >  http://lists.racket-lang.org/users
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