This seems to gloss over two key points. First, that the described CS project involved mostly a program design & implementation, the main focus of a CS class. Design and implementation of semi-artistic artifacts, even if it includes mathematical elements, doesn't seem like a main goal of an algebra class. Further, there is a matter of time -- if the expectation in the algebra class was to spend an hour on it, it is not a big deal. But if the expectation was much larger, it does seem like a huge waste of time. This is not true for the assignment described by John.
On 3/16/2011 11:51 AM, John Clement wrote: > > This is the crux of the matter. How is it graded? I have usually gave a > computer science assignment where the students had to do an animation. It > had requirements such as 4 different line styles, 5 different colors, 30 > different objects... Then extra points were given as a bonus for > animation. > Each requirement was specified with a rubric that awarded a certain number > of points for each item, and some partial credit would be given. This was > the last project of the semester, and it was mainly done in class. The > basic grade was for a project that worked. > > I didn't tell them how to do this. I handed them a stack of documentation > with a small sample project or two. Needless to say they were not allowed > to copy the sample and incorporate it directly into their project. And of > course they were programming it into the computer in a language such > as C++ > or Java. > > I would think this type of thing would be better used as a programming > exercise where the students have the computer draw the stuff on the screen > using equations. I would can the creativity or just have a small number of > bonus points awarded for it. > > My animation project was enjoyable, educational, and it helped me get good > student evaluations, so it was profitable. Since I practically never > lectured, students did essentially math projects on the computer using a > language. They worked through various worksheets which presented examples > and then asked them to figure out what was going on. Then there were final > projects which required them to use some of the constructs they learned. > There were some simple binay manipulatives and a lot of Socratic dialog. > The only evidence that I had about how well it worked were some > students who > spontaneously reported to me. They said that they took the SAT for the > second time and in the math section used the style of thinking that they > were using in comp sci. The result was a 100 point gain. Another student > came into class and remarked that he had to think again. So when I asked > him what he meant, he said he had to think during my first period physics > class, and then he went to sleep the rest of the day until my last period > comp sci. class. You can't get much better feedback than that! The physics > classes all showed much higher gain than normally seen in conventional > lecture classes. > > John M. Clement > Houston, TX > > > > > > > Dennis, did your student explain how this would be graded? Is it > possible > > that a student would get a good grade if he/she did the algebra > correctly > > (with perhaps extra points for a creative answer)? > > > >
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