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Teaching AP Computer Science
Posted:
May 11, 2000 4:05 PM


There is some chance that I will be teaching AP computer science at a local high school next year (I'm *not* a credentialed teacher, though I do have some related experience  I've worked in distance education for many years, I coach regional math teams, and I've taught students in a youth program at a nearby community college. In any case, they are apparently quite desperate to find someone to do it. I think it's troubling that a relatively welltodo Silicon Valley school is unable to find a computer science teacher, but perhaps that's another discussion topic.) I am comfortable with dealing with students; I know the content of the course  but I am very much new to public high school teaching, and to computer science pedagogy, and I welcome advice about either.
I think some of the ideas of math reform apply even more naturally to programming and computer science  especially the use of cooperative learning, and some stress on coming up with one's own algorithms. Indeed, it might not even be considered "reform" in computer science, since many cs classes were using these ideas long before the current math reform debates.
Anyway, I would be very interested in hearing from anyone with experience teaching high school computer science, especially the current AP version.
Ted Alper alper@epgy.stanford.edu



