Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Waning Summer Days...

My goal is to finish my AP Computer Science syllabus before this Friday. I've been pecking away at it and trying to wrap my mind around the structure all summer basically. It's ALMOST there. I ended up really enjoying my APSI workshop, but there seems to be a trend in computer science (and by trend, I mean 2 cases!). The gentleman that was teaching us had a ton of experience and a ton of ideas, and he gave us resources to learn from, but the bulk of his stuff was copyrighted because he sells his textbook and labs and such. I've also found this with one other "package" that seems to be popular.

I'm used to the math world, I guess, where we seem to just put it out there and share freely. I'm feeling judgy and don't like that feeling, and the stubborn part of me says, "no, I will not buy your stuff". I've also heard various things about, "just get a syllabus online and don't stress about it". That doesn't work ideally for me, since if I don't jump in and get my hands dirty, I feel I'm missing an opportunity to justify all my syllabus choices of what to teach when and why and how much, and get a deep understanding of the year, etc.

I've been cutting and pasting and moving around the various topics to meet my goals of engaging the students and having a logical flow and such. It also feels like a wee bit of a fairy tale because in all honesty, I don't know how much time it will take for each concept to sink in to their brains. My take is that you "dab and go and keep coming back to it". Exposure and constant revisiting seems to be the key.

I'm also making 3 of these for my trip next week to Canada/in-laws for the last vacation of the summer and the first sight of a new niece and a visit with 2 other little nieces-something-removed.


  1. I read your thoughts about AP Comp Sci, and I feel like you must be reading my own thoughts. I'm teaching this course for the first time next year too. I recently went to an APSI, and I'm presently constructing a syllabus, although I think I will give myself until next Friday to get it done. Thank you for sharing your ideas and stories!

  2. Good Luck, Alison. I just finished yesterday, and now I'm super relieved. Now to the actual part of creating lessons and such. I'll share if I come up with anything new and useful. Hope you're enjoying the last days of summer.