[Edu-sig] Deliverable Lesson Package = runnable Python Module

kirby urner kirby.urner at gmail.com
Tue Feb 26 02:19:25 CET 2008

My projects have brought me to "lesson plan as python module"
or "python module as lesson plan" concept, a quasi no-brainer
for a lotta ya already, i.e. it's what you've been doing all along.

The "lesson reading / plan = Python module" idea connects to
the rich data structures idea (also a thread on comp.lang.python
not so long ago too).  Like you might keep your Periodic Table of
Elements on the side, in some text-based format, and pipe
it in with a reader, or you might start with it already in a
Pythonic data structure (it's not either/or), e.g.  a module with
each element a class instance of Atom, with attributes protons
and neutrons etc. (why reinvent the wheel?).

Here's a link to a home grown example of recent vintage,
floating around among teachers:


Note that much of the verbiage is about the knowledge domain
(hexapent geometry -- HP4E is one of my pet projects, named in
honor of CP4E).  The lesson isn't so much about the Python
implementation, which is quite trivial in this case i.e. is not
a "big code" example (very minimal Python 3.x).

What we expect are many similar modules but with at least
the comments sections swapped out, replaced with text in
other languages, including left to right cursives -- the promise
of Unicode.  Your on-ramp to programming doesn't *have*
to mean complete immersion in Latin-1.

The format is simple enough that individual teachers now swap
these around i.e. we're not trying to go for an embeddable XML
type solution, documentation directives, just native Python in
these examples, cut and pastable into any reasonably Unicode-
aware text editor.**


 ** I'm aware of other fancy skinning techniques, some with tools
for easy code extraction -- again, it's not either/or.

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