6 augusti 2014

Help needed!

I'm working as a remedial teacher at an upper secondary vocational institution in Finland, my students are between 15 and 40 years old. As a surprise to this fall semester I got a course about "PCs and Peripherals" and lots of hours/lessons and I struggle with what to teach. In my opinion I have way too many hours...

My students will be the first year and it's the one of the first courses, I have to make them interested in both the learning process as the profession (Business Information Technican).

My colleagues who use to have this course has a different opinion than me what to learn (surprise surprise!) and also don't want to share material with me. There has been one who has been willing to help and suggested lots of topics like history, how a computer works, what every part is and more. But honestly, 90 hours???

I believe youth today learn in a different way than the way I myself were taught, thanks to videogames as that is the primary entertainment thing nowdays. Therefor I believe I as a teacher has to change my didactics so I make my lessons more interesting.

Here's my thought:
I have recently discovered Minecraft and believe it's an excellent tool to use in education. I have not yet have the ability to buy the MinecraftEDU so I use a vanilla server. As a red thread in this course, together with my students, we will build a computer inside Minecraft.

To this red thread I can connect everything possible; history of computers, parts, peripherals.

This spring fall I had students to build a calculator in Minecraft and I thought it would be at least a week work, but it only took like a day and a night. Therefor I have to aim higher!

So please give me some help here
1. Any good and working tutorials how to build a computer (redstone) is most wanted!
2. Am I nuts?
3. Have I missed something?

2 kommentarer:

  1. I am not a computer 'maker' nor a redstone genius, however isn't a computer just a massive series of switches, 1s and 0s and it is these massive number of binary data pieces that creates the memory, and in that memory you can store the program.

    Without serious investigation, isn't a calculator very similar to a computer, and pushing the calculator build farther and using the redstone mechanics you needed to create the calculator should yield some more high end computer'ish results.

    I think you may need to go back to basics, what does a "Business Information Technician" actually need to know about computers? Is it how to build one, is it how to fix one, is it how to work with one or is it all of the above?

    I also think maybe you could narrow your focus a little, because does a "BIT" really need to know what computers were like 15 years ago, or do they need to know about computers now? I would lean to computers now, I mean the history is amazing for those who are interested in learning it, but I don't think it is really going to be applicable to the career.

    Just a few thoughts, and I am not sure Minecraft and building a computer within it is the 'best' option here. Maybe as an interest project for some interested parties, but not necessarily as a project for all.

  2. I know and what you say it's true.

    The calculator/computer would be a project inside the course because I know they're going to play something anyhow and therefor I would like to control it (if possible).

    They don't need to know how to build a computer but they need to open them and know how to the parts works and how the CPU is working maybe could be done in Minecraft.

    They will also have some programming courses later on and if they can understand the logic witg 1s and 0s I believe they have benefits of it.

    That's how I think at the moment :D so, yes I'm NUTS :D

    The class is only 6-7 students so I believe it could work. With 30 no but a small group like this maybe :)