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TODD’S TECH TUESDAY: computational thinking

March 22, 2011
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This week’s posting may not be for the faint hearted, but it is a neat idea for those up to the challenge.  Google offers a series of lessons on computational thinking, which can be used to both strengthen math skills and familiarize students with the art and science of developing computer code.

Those of you that have some computer programming in your background, particularly “old” people who may have  learned non-object oriented languages, probably remember that many of your first programming assignments involved writing code that performed a simple, calculator-like function.  This is the basis for many of the lesson examples you will see.  Using the free, open-source coding software called Python, students looking for this extra challenge can learn to decompose problems into the needed parts to write a simple program to solve a given problem.  After you’ve mastered some of the examples here, why not try creating your own more advanced problem dealing with a physics or calculus topic?

Since the tie-in between mathematics and computer programming is often very strong, undoubtedly some learners new to programming will discover a hobby that they will love!

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