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Simplico: "You need to walk before you can run."
Salvati: "No, you need something to run towards!"
-From "Lockhart's Lament" by Paul Lockhart

1. Teaching Methodology 2. Learning and the Brain (What do the neuroscientists say...?)
  • Crystallized vs. Fluid Intelligence (Information transfer vs. Information processing)
  • John Medina - The Brain Rules
  • Music and Learning 50-60 beats per minute
  • Standing Desks in the classroom
  • Who left the MRI on? Brain scans...
  • "Learning and the Brain" Judy Willis, M.D. (Neurologist and Middle School Teacher)
    • The Brain's Information Processing Model
    • Attention Filter (Reticular Activating System/Hippocampus)
      • 99% of sensory input is filtered out by the RAS
    • Emotional Filter/Switching Station (Amygdala)
      • If under high stress ("Fight or Flight"), the switch is OFF (little info goes to Prefontal Cortex or PFC)
      • If little or no stress, switch is ON (deep learning can occur)
        • Infomation moves to PFC
        • Memory construction
        • Long-term memory
        • Connections between memories are formed
      • Pre-frontal cortex
        • "Higher Order Thinking"
        • Where Crystallized and Fluid Intelligence come together
      • The "Game Model" of Learning
        • Dopamine - Attention Booster
        • Effort is one of the most critical parts to learning, but it is useless unless students believe that it will lead to success
        • Einstein and General Relativity
3. APCS Fall/Spring Long Term Project
  • Most common conditions for high-performance learning experiences: (Trilling/Fadel: "21st Century Skills")
    • "Very high levels of learning come from an internal personal passion."
    • "Equally high levels of external caring and personal support - a demanding but loving teacher, a tough but caring coach, or an inspirational learning guide."
    • Full permission to fail - safely, and with encouragement to apply the hard lessons learned from failure to continuing the struggle with the challenge at hand."
  • Fall Project (pdf)   (doc)
  • UML Template (pdf)   (xls)
  • Fall Project Rubric (pdf)   (xls) Press Ctrl-k to add new student
  • Sample Project Proposal
  • Sample Projects
  • Sample Project Presentation
  • Project Peer Evaluation (template)   (sample)
  • Project Self Evaluation (template)   (sample)

1. Establish project / file naming rules
  • Always have "Project" at end of names of project (e.g. ArrayListProject, MyCritterProject)
  • Always have students use directories to organize projects for quick retrieval
2. Variable / Method / Class naming rules
  • Always begin with a letter
  • Use a-z, A-Z, 0-9 ONLY (no underscores)
  • Use camelNotation for variable and method names
  • Use "final" whenever possible
  • Begin class names with a capital letter with CamelNotation
  • ( Parenthesis spacing ) all the time!
  • Use spacing liberally…memory is CHEAP!

3. Commenting rules
  • Comment end curly brace of classes, methods, loops( while, for), and if statements
    if( ... )
       } // end if
  • Comment purpose of methods using Javadocs with @param and @return
  • Comment purpose of loops (while, for)
  • Comment purpose of if-else statements

4. How do I get Java up and running on my system?
If you have a Mac, you already have Java installed on your system, so you do not need to install Java. You can skip to step 2 below. If you have a Windows system you will need to install the Java SDK. Follow the steps below or watch the following at LewTube that demonstrates the process.
  1. Step 1: Go to the BlueJ website and download the Java JDK 6 (Java Development Kit). Save it to your computer, then run the installation program. Installing the JDK will intall the Java "compiler" and other useful tools. Remember, this is only needed if you are running a Windows system.
  2. Step 2: Go back to BlueJ and download the version of BlueJ for your system (Windows or Mac). Run the installation program and you are ready to go!

5. How do I create a project, java file, compile, and run a program?
If you have BlueJ up and running, then try some of the sample programs in either of the above recommended books (or any book that you may have). Follow the steps below that demonstrates the process.
  1. Click File | New Project. Type the name of the project. A project will keep all of your .java file(s) together for easy management.
  2. Click "New Class" in the BlueJ window. Type the name of the file (BlueJ will add the required .java extension automatically).
  3. Click on a "Class Type". The simple "Class" is sufficient to start.
  4. Click OK to save the file.
  5. Double click on the icon for the class that you just created.
  6. Type in the source code for you Java program.
  7. Press "Compile" (or press Apple-K) to compile your file(s).
  8. Close window that holds your java program
  9. Right click on the file that contains "main" and click on "void main(String [] args)"
  10. Click OK to run program!

6. The Javadoc commenting convention
Javadoc comments

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© 2003-2016 Michael Lew