On 2/28/06, <b class="gmail_sendername">Toby Donaldson</b> <<a href="mailto:email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org</a>> wrote:<div><span class="gmail_quote"></span><blockquote class="gmail_quote" style="border-left: 1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); margin: 0pt 0pt 0pt 0.8ex; padding-left: 1ex;">
As I pointed out in my message, the reason we use turtle graphics is<br>to introduce the idea of functional decomposition and bottom-up<br>development. I have little interest in graphics, personally.</blockquote><div><br>
Not sure what this means exactly, but I'm sure there're lots of ways to do this.<br><br>def g:...<br>def f:...<br>def h:...<br>h(g(f(x)))<br>f(h(g(x)))<br>h(h(g(f(h(g(x)))))<br><br>whatever.<br><br></div><blockquote class="gmail_quote" style="border-left: 1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); margin: 0pt 0pt 0pt 0.8ex; padding-left: 1ex;">
It worked very well for our students, and the fact that turtle<br>graphics is a toy is important: there's less anxiety playing with</blockquote><div><br>By "toy" I meant something more like "broken toy" -- thinking specifically of
turtle.py on Windows. One could argue that it's Window's that's the broken toy in this picture. I'd probably smile and nod. I'm not anti-turtle and certainly not anti-Python. I tolerate Windows because I love .NET (so far anyway -- my goal is to be teaching IronPython someday soon, on Linux boxes as well). Maybe at some future SIGCSE (if they stop meeting in Texas -- I'm boycotting that state for the forseeable future, won't go to any events there (Texas has screwed up the Oregon electrical power scene big time, adding to my bill, messing with my quality of living)).
<br> </div><blockquote class="gmail_quote" style="border-left: 1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); margin: 0pt 0pt 0pt 0.8ex; padding-left: 1ex;">toys. I see many, many students who have zero experience with<br>programming in high school, and exhibit more anxiety in the
<br>first-programming course than in a math course (which at they least<br>have a decade of experience with, even if they dislike the topic).<br><br>Toby</blockquote><div><br>The Shuttleworth Foundation in South Africa is looking at Logo | Squeak | Python as a preferred pipeline. The curriculum is designed for self-teachers, home scholars,
i.e. no cadre of "qualified teachers" need apply. In this model, we'll have gotten the turtle stuff out of the way (on a first pass anyway) with Logo. Python will be under no pressure to star as a turtle graphics platform (it's not known for this now and it's an uphill battle to win recognition for it in this niche). Kids coming into Python will already be highly familiar with turtle stuff, so we can allude to it (in the curriculum, maybe a Moodle -- I've pointed them to two of mine), but we don't introduce either programming or turtles using Python.
<br><br>I'm brainstorming towards the day when high schoolers with no previous programming experience will be the exception more than the rule. That's already the case here in Portland, in some schools anyway. I hope South Africa will get there shortly (you might think they have a long way to go, but actually South Africa is poised for a great leap forward, in the Chinese sense, but we hope without the same stumbling).