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#1 LeisureProgrammer  Icon User is offline

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I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 15 December 2009 - 06:06 PM

I think that I'm already starting to dislike my first programming teacher ever :(
I'm in Gr. 10, and I have a course with him next semester that teaches programming VIA Java...

Just look at this quote from his website:

Quote

How v. Why: a dillema in learning programming
In the world of programming students, there are "how" students and "why" students.
"How" students just want to know what is required to get things done. When learning Java, I find this approach best. I will inform you where to put the code, and then run it . You will do it, and hopefully it will work . I will ask you to ignore a bunch of stuff that you will learn about later, and you will trust me on that.
"Why" students want to know the background behind each line of code. "Why do we have to have 'public static void?'" etc. These types of students can struggle with introductory programming languages - especially Java. "Why?" is a very important question, but the timing of asking it is equally important. In C++, I can explain every line of code except one in the introductory lesson. I can't with Java. Worse - If I try, I'll really upset the "how" students.


I've talked to his previous students, and they say that he doesn't actually teach anything - he just makes them learn from his old notes :v:

Based on the quote from his website, would you not like having him a teacher too?

This post has been edited by LeisureProgrammer: 15 December 2009 - 06:09 PM


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#2 0xFF  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 15 December 2009 - 06:51 PM

View PostLeisureProgrammer, on 15 Dec, 2009 - 07:06 PM, said:

I think that I'm already starting to dislike my first programming teacher ever :(
I'm in Gr. 10, and I have a course with him next semester that teaches programming VIA Java...

Just look at this quote from his website:

Quote

How v. Why: a dillema in learning programming
In the world of programming students, there are "how" students and "why" students.
"How" students just want to know what is required to get things done. When learning Java, I find this approach best. I will inform you where to put the code, and then run it . You will do it, and hopefully it will work . I will ask you to ignore a bunch of stuff that you will learn about later, and you will trust me on that.
"Why" students want to know the background behind each line of code. "Why do we have to have 'public static void?'" etc. These types of students can struggle with introductory programming languages - especially Java. "Why?" is a very important question, but the timing of asking it is equally important. In C++, I can explain every line of code except one in the introductory lesson. I can't with Java. Worse - If I try, I'll really upset the "how" students.


I've talked to his previous students, and they say that he doesn't actually teach anything - he just makes them learn from his old notes :v:

Based on the quote from his website, would you not like having him a teacher too?

Post his website I'd love to send this chap a lengthy email.

This is his teaching style.

Heh, I remember my C teacher from first year... what a waste she was. Talked about flowcharts like they were the cornerstone of the industry. I'd say on average we spent 85% of our time talking about a good flowchart, 10% her trying to stump me while I slept, and 5% doing actual programming. Next year's profs were flabbergasted as to why no one in the class knew anything about C. I had been programming a good number of years before the class, and had no need to go, but I went anyway because she decided to make pop quizes worth grades in there =/. Well that was fine and dandy, so I sat in the back row and listened to my music with my head down all semester. She would randomly ask me questions and wake me up "what's this on the board" I would say the answer, she would look surprised, I would go back to sleep. It got to the point that I actually did bring a pillow to this class... I started doing this the day after she BORED ME SO MUCH THAT I LITERALLY FELL ASLEEP WITH MY EYES OPEN.

I went to the exam in this course after a few drinks, got a 98 in the course, never saw her again. Moved on.

The lesson here is, your teachers can be useless, so don't learn from them if you can help it.

This post has been edited by 0xFF: 15 December 2009 - 06:53 PM

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#3 markhazlett9  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 15 December 2009 - 11:49 PM

Unfortunately I'm dealing with some of the same types of teachers. There isn't much you can do other than accept it and try and learn it yourself. You have great resources online such as DIC to help you out. Also, programming is something you can learn on your own, and sometimes that works better than being taught. I don't like it either but, being a 4th year in University, I can tell you it won't change anytime soon.

Cheers
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#4 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 15 December 2009 - 11:52 PM

View PostLeisureProgrammer, on 15 Dec, 2009 - 07:06 PM, said:

I think that I'm already starting to dislike my first programming teacher ever :(

Just wait until you get into the working world :) :^:

I once worked for a company where we were known as professional ditch diggers. Because we constantly filled in the holes that we were told to create.

Quote

Them : Uninstall this software, we no longer use it.
Us : But we spent years writing & perfecting that software. Shouldn't we wait at least a month or two after it's been disabled to remove it? What if someone needs it?
Them : Do as you are told & don't ask questions : MANAGEMENT HAS SPOKEN!
Us : Ok.
Them : Crap! The system is down, reinstall software X
Us : Ok.

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#5 TriggaMike  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 15 December 2009 - 11:58 PM

Always ask why. Asking why will make you able to program in any language. Asking how will make you a useless boob that knows how to program in a single language. If he can't explain the why behind Java then you're teach really is awful. Yes it depends on a virtual machine so it's difficult, but I could explain to you the why behind a basic 'hello world' java program, and I'm only a second year SD student. This guy is probably referencing a teaching book and a "Java for Dummies" book. What a tool.
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#6 markhazlett9  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 15 December 2009 - 11:59 PM

View Postno2pencil, on 15 Dec, 2009 - 10:52 PM, said:

Quote

Them : Uninstall this software, we no longer use it.
Us : But we spent years writing & perfecting that software. Shouldn't we wait at least a month or two after it's been disabled to remove it? What if someone needs it?
Them : Do as you are told & don't ask questions : MANAGEMENT HAS SPOKEN!
Us : Ok.
Them : Crap! The system is down, reinstall software X
Us : Ok.


Haha so awesome, well not awesome, but you know what I mean... lol... there should be classes on how to make management understand tech stuff! haha
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#7 TriggaMike  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 16 December 2009 - 01:50 AM

Would be fair. We are required to take their shitty business courses after all :rolleyes:
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#8 KYA  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 16 December 2009 - 07:49 AM

So what exactly about Java makes him unable to explain the why?

C++/Java ~ damn near the same.
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#9 PixelStation  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 16 December 2009 - 10:02 AM

View PostKYA, on 16 Dec, 2009 - 06:49 AM, said:

So what exactly about Java makes him unable to explain the why?

C++/Java ~ damn near the same.

Only if you know how C++ works. Keep in mind he's talking about a Grade 10 course. C++ and the low-level explanations are scary for those guys. At that point they're concerned more about teaching the basic concepts of computer programming. Like loops and variables. Unfortunately, if you're ahead of the game and know all that boring stuff already, then you're screwed for a few years. But being bored is better than drowning right off the start.

It sucks, but you gotta do what you gotta do. Hopefully you'll choose a good college/university and you wont feel the same way anymore (I wish I chose a better school :P).
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#10 TriggaMike  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 16 December 2009 - 11:41 AM

The fact of the matter is that if you can explain why C++ works you should be able to explain why Java works unless you don't really know about programming at all. If you can't explain why it says "public static void main(String[] args)" at the top of a program then you need to give your head a shake and stop teaching programming.
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#11 SpeedisaVirus  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 16 December 2009 - 07:56 PM

Fact of the matter is WHY isn't critical in an intro course. HOW is more important while underlining certain principles. In depth discussion of WHY happens at a higher level. When you know HOW, hearing WHY may make much more sense.

It may or may not be that he doesn't know why in Java but that its inconsequential for course and doesn't want to deal with it. If he doesn't understand why, he is a bit of a tard. The JVM may simply be a black box to him :)
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#12 macosxnerd101  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 16 December 2009 - 09:45 PM

View PostLeisureProgrammer, on 15 Dec, 2009 - 09:06 PM, said:

I think that I'm already starting to dislike my first programming teacher ever :(
I'm in Gr. 10, and I have a course with him next semester that teaches programming VIA Java...

Just look at this quote from his website:

Quote

How v. Why: a dillema in learning programming
In the world of programming students, there are "how" students and "why" students.
"How" students just want to know what is required to get things done. When learning Java, I find this approach best. I will inform you where to put the code, and then run it . You will do it, and hopefully it will work . I will ask you to ignore a bunch of stuff that you will learn about later, and you will trust me on that.
"Why" students want to know the background behind each line of code. "Why do we have to have 'public static void?'" etc. These types of students can struggle with introductory programming languages - especially Java. "Why?" is a very important question, but the timing of asking it is equally important. In C++, I can explain every line of code except one in the introductory lesson. I can't with Java. Worse - If I try, I'll really upset the "how" students.


I've talked to his previous students, and they say that he doesn't actually teach anything - he just makes them learn from his old notes :v:

Based on the quote from his website, would you not like having him a teacher too?


Welcome to Hell your first Intro to Programming class (I thought the second one was worse)! :) For some reason, it is the standard to have a shitty intro to programming teacher. All's I can say is to be the biggest pain in his ass you can be if he holds you back with the rest of the class and correct him on everything. After about 4.5 weeks or less of it, you will want to eat him.

By the way, here is a link to a dead thread I started a year or so ago about the same situation. Trust me when I say that you are not the only one who has had to deal with this.
http://www.dreaminco...wtopic80082.htm

I sympathize with your situation, and please try to actually learn and go ahead. Hang out on the Java forum to pick up some stuff, reply to threads and open your own if you need help. That's why we're here. Good luck with your class! :) I hope it isn't too unbearable.
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#13 LaFayette  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 17 December 2009 - 08:10 AM

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All's I can say is to be the biggest pain in his ass you can be if he holds you back with the rest of the class


"Know it all"s in class are just as annoying as bad teachers. It's not the teacher's job push you forward if you already know the stuff presented in class.
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#14 macosxnerd101  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 17 December 2009 - 09:32 AM

View PostLaFayette, on 17 Dec, 2009 - 11:10 AM, said:

Quote

All's I can say is to be the biggest pain in his ass you can be if he holds you back with the rest of the class


"Know it all"s in class are just as annoying as bad teachers. It's not the teacher's job push you forward if you already know the stuff presented in class.

True. But it also isn't a teacher's job to hold you back if you know the stuff and go off on your own. IMHO, one should spread the fun so to speak if being held back at school. Metaphorically speaking, if you're sticking a BC Calculus student your Algebra I class, then that student should have the right to correct every little math mistake that teacher makes with a vengance. It isn't fair at all to the student.

However, if the teacher let's you go off on your own more in-depth studies (with the understanding that you will still have to complete the assignments and assessments), then that teacher is doing his or her job very well, and should be treated with a lot of respect.

That's the dicotomy between my Java intro class last year and my AP CS class this year.

This post has been edited by macosxnerd101: 17 December 2009 - 09:33 AM

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#15 SpeedisaVirus  Icon User is offline

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Re: I think I am already starting to dislike my first programming teacher

Posted 17 December 2009 - 10:56 AM

its situational. I had someone in an intro class try and argue with the teacher as to why we wouldn't want to use a linked list in a situation. Problem was that the purpose at the moment was to teach how to implement and use a linked list... Kid needed someone to drop kick his ass.

then in another class this guy would sit up front and just start asking questions while the teacher was talking. Wouldn't raise his hand, would interrupt other students questions, and worst of all there was barely a connection between the questions and lecture.

its one thing to ask questions and make corrections but its another thing to be a dick and nitpick things that have no bearing on the teaching objective.

B)

know it alls suck unless you actually do know it all...like me.
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