Yesterday I had an opportunity to go to a coding training class in the city of Chicago. I am changing jobs this year in going to a new high school which is going to bring on a lot of challenges and I’m very excited about that. One of those challenges is that I am teaching an AP computer theory course that involves a lot of coding. Over the past couple years I’ve dabbled a little bit in the coding world. I would say I’m at a first grade level when it comes to understanding it. At this particular training I was asking a lot of questions trying to understand how things work, how students will react to new challenges to coding, and generally anything to give me an advantage to teaching a course and subject I know little about.
In the middle of training we were put into smaller groups of people who were at different levels of understanding code. I was obviously in the lowest level of knowledge group. There were three of us in the group and one gentleman had traveled from Milwaukee to this training. As we talked he told me that he has already taught the class for a year and he loved it. I asked him several questions about different types of coding, projects, etc. One thing I noticed about this gentleman was his absolute excitement about coding.
As he answered every one of my questions he was smiling and had this spark in his eye about what students could do in coding.
His excitement was infectious. At the end of the day still not knowing that much about coding and exactly what I’m going to do in the class, this educator had taught me a valuable lesson. The students in any course will react to your mindset around the curriculum. If you come into a classroom excited about the curriculum, learning and understanding there are opportunities everywhere, your students will learn along with you. This great teacher who traveled from Milwaukee to Chicago to learn more about coding was able to get me excited in less than an hour about a subject in which I was initially scared of.
That’s how we can disrupt education.