Our challenge of Topic Challenge #02: Being Selfish has received 2 entries:

  1. Strategies for self-learners to transition into working on larger projects - 177 points!
  2. Attempting to prevent learning of poor techniques when self-teaching - 144 points!

So, congratulations to Michael0x2a for first place, and heather for second place!

Now, for our next one, we'll need suggestions for a challenge. So go ahead and suggest a challenge. Remember, you can suggest more than one, and they don't have to be a tag challenge.


5 Answers 5


Topic Challenge #3: Work your body line

I see what you mean, but it makes no sense to me.

I hear what you're saying, but I just can't see it.

That just don't feel right to me, seems like there's something missing.

I Value what you're showing me.
I Apreciate what you're saying.
I Know what you're doing.

Can anyone help connect the dots? ... Maybe we need some to put this all together.

Sometime in the past, maybe back when we were learning how to teach, I'm sure we all learned about learning styles of one model or another. (My favorite is the VAK model, but others work as well.) Since then, seemingly, the emphasis has been on saying and showing. Now we have a question where showing becomes pointless, and most often our saying is linked to our showing anyway. In all that instruction, most of the kinesthetic "learning" happen when the students write notes, or type code.

In the early days, (oh sooo long ago, right?), we had some really good stuff about getting the students active in the learning. Then we lost our momentum, and now it seems to be all talk and little action.

I propose that we use as a base, but focus on the techniques that increase the use of kinesthetic learning strategies in the instruction set. Not just examples of activities (there's plenty of those to choose from on CS Unplugged), but how to actually integrate it into the whole of the teaching, and the testing.

This might also need some creative adjustments to the scoring, but I am not sure.

Work, work, work, Senora,
Work your body line
Work, work, work, Senora,
Work it all the time

Jump in the Line,, by Harry Belafonte

  • $\begingroup$ Sounds like an interesting challenge :D $\endgroup$
    – ItamarG3
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 10:19
  • $\begingroup$ I tried to keep it lively, at least. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 10:20
  • $\begingroup$ Actually, there is an active-learning tag already. It seems more specific to what you are suggesting. I think the tag needs more action anyway. (no pun intended). $\endgroup$
    – Buffy
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 12:27
  • $\begingroup$ @Buffy Well, yes and no. As I understand the industry usage of active learning it can include, for example, a round-table discussion in chat. Not a very active activity in the kinesthetic sense. Although, by its nature, I think a kinesthetic activity would also qualify as _active learning. Mammals are animals, but animals may not be mammals. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 16:58
  • $\begingroup$ Learning styles have been basically discredited, so I recommend we don't couple kinesthetic learning with differentiation. Kinesthetic learning is a subset of active learning, and is useful enough in its own right, even without differentiation. $\endgroup$
    – Ben I. Mod
    Commented Sep 5, 2017 at 15:41
  • $\begingroup$ “And then we lost momentum” ☺@Beni I thought mostly discredited, except that using all styles, and not targeting them is the best (so basically the opposite of what was proposed by the styles movement). $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 8, 2017 at 8:14
  • $\begingroup$ @BenI. should we build on this, or make a new "challenge 3" voting? $\endgroup$
    – ItamarG3
    Commented May 27, 2019 at 11:21
  • $\begingroup$ @ItamarG3 isn't this what we tried last time? $\endgroup$
    – Ben I. Mod
    Commented May 27, 2019 at 22:53
  • $\begingroup$ @ItamarG3 If a new challenge is being considered, I think y'all ought to start a new meta question for it. This one is stale beyond compare. Just make a new meta post, featured of course, about what's wanted for suggestions, and what the goals, and guidelines, are. $\endgroup$ Commented May 27, 2019 at 23:56
  • $\begingroup$ @GypsySpellweaver Great Idea. $\endgroup$
    – ItamarG3
    Commented May 28, 2019 at 5:23

Suggestion: a lot of the questions currently on this site are geared towards helping intro students. But what about non-intro students, and more advanced topics? (Things like compilers, distributed systems, networking, type systems, machine learning...)

Many of the more advanced topics can be challenging to explain and teach, so it'd be great if we could crowd-source either lesson ideas or explanations focusing on teaching these kinds of non-intro topics.

(Caveat: this idea is a bit unrefined, and probably could do with some polishing.)


Suggestion: questions that deal with any specific subfield of Artificial intelligence (Machine Learning, genetic algorithm etc.)

Should probably be tagged with and the subfield your using.


@Michael 42 suggested that questions are bias toward introductory.

While I would agree, if seen from a university perspective. I think that there is a bias toward university education. With some senior-school, and little to no infant-school or primary-school questions.

What can we do to encourage, questions about teaching younger people?

Definitions: UK England(may be different in other parts of UK)

  • Infant school: age 4→7 (years reception, 1,2) Keystage 1
  • Primary school: age 7→11 (years 3→6) Keystage 2
  • Secondary school age 11→19 (years 7→13) Keystage 3, 4, 5
  • Keystage 1 and 2 has non-specialist teachers. However not unusual to have a few specialists.
  • Keystage 3, 4, 5 has specialist teachers.
  • Keystage 4, 5 pupils only study subjects to which they will be doing an exam.
  • Keystage 5 non-compulsory education, usually only 3 subjects.
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Based on perspective that higher-level introductory type questions have the decided edge, and that Keystages lower than 5, or 4, seem to be sparsely represented, what would you propose as the actual challenge? $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 8, 2017 at 8:35

Questions seem to be bias toward Computer science. What about the other areas, that we teach in the UK: IT, and digital literacy?

3 strands of computing, in the UK — taken from https://royalsociety.org/topics-policy/projects/computing-in-schools/report/

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ That might be branching out too far from our target. IT and digital literacy questions, so far, have had mixed reception, verging on flat denial. This might be better discussed (hashed out) in meta and/or chat, before a topic challenge focuses on them. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 8, 2017 at 8:38

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