People expect senior high school programming mentors to excel not only in teaching, but also in software development and design methods. If you are among them, you probably know that your knowledge and ability can greatly affect your students’ success in their chosen track.
The tips we have listed below can make that result possible. Heeding these tips will not only hone your programming muscles as a senior high school programming teacher. It will assure your students, too, that you can shape them into the skilled programmers they dream to be in the future.
Strategies to Advance Your Senior High School Programming Skills
1. Take free online training courses.
If you have not developed your first computer program yet, Zapier’s Editorial Manager Melanie Pinola suggests turning to online training sites such as Codecademy, Code.org, and KhanAcademy. These sites offer free courses and tutorials that will not only introduce you to the basics of programming but will also let you create new applications, games, and other projects.
2. Play coding games.
3. Attend computer-programming classes.
Unlike before, we can now attend to programming classes and workshops offered by different schools and community centers without enrolling. This is good news, especially if you are a new senior high school programming instructor. Besides providing you “hands-on help from an experienced programmer,” wikiHow points out that it will help you “network with other local programmers,” too.
4. Read programming books.
Before you can understand how a good code differs from a bad one, you must learn to compare from previous codes and see how they vary. Reading books may help in this case since most authors are experts themselves. You will often find their personal struggles and suggestions relevant. This is a chance for you to improve your skills by learning from their experience.
To start your search for a good programming book or guide, Nermin Hajdarbegovic, technical editor at Toptal, suggests visiting Github. This site offers a list of free programming documents that range from topics and technologies, such as mathematics, hardware-specific development guides, and detailed technical guides for various languages.
Reminder: More is not always good. Instead of juggling five books, focus on two great books you may enjoy flipping through for several times.
5. Get feedback from other programmers.
When was the last time you asked a fellow programmer for feedback? Do not be like those amateur programmers who hate receiving criticisms. Asking feedback from other programmers—whether they are experts or not—is a great way to improve your skills, declares Bob Pepalis, a content strategist from Izenda. Perhaps someone who has been in your situation has something to say about the problem you are working on, he explains. Take their feedback positively and think of ways to apply it to your work.
6. Take part in local programming contests and jams.
If you are someone who loves competition, Joel Lee, a writer and editor from MakeUseOf, suggests looking for coding jams and contests. Since you will need to meet some deadlines, these competitions will force you to grow and adapt as quickly as possible.
7. Contribute to open source projects.
Getting involved in an open source project is a great way to boost your programming skills. Lee claims that it allows you to study the code and learn from it directly. Likewise, he agrees that contributing to open source projects let others “critique the code you submit for improvements” and “expand your network of coding friends and mentors.”
8. Review other programmer’s code.
Reviewing codes is an effective way to improve your computer programming talents, confirms Javin Paul, a software architect at Infotech. It can greatly help you as a reviewer since it enhances your “code sense” and gives “genuine advice.” Likewise, he agrees that a code review enables programmers to learn from their faults.
9. Join online communities for programmers.
In addition to reviewing codes, Paul explains as well the benefit of sharing our ideas to other people. Since programming is a broad field, we tend to forget a few ideas and principles about it, especially if we do not use them often. Taking part in online communities such as Stack Overflow, CodeNewbie, and Coderwall is an effective way not only to stay updated with programming trends but also to correct our misconceptions.
Why Further Your Programming Skills
Shaun Killian of The Australian Society for Evidence Based Teaching recently reported the value a teacher’s credibility to his/her student’s school performance. He quoted Professor John Hattie, a researcher in education, saying, “If a teacher is not perceived as credible, the students just turn off.”
Thus, senior high school programming instructors like you need to step up and upgrade your skills, too. You have to make the extra effort to enhance your knowledge and abilities and create a huge impact on your students’ lives.
By heeding the tips we have listed above, you will not only improve your skills but also assure your students of their future as skilled programmers.
Sources: lifehacker.com | javarevisited.blogspot.com | makeuseof.com | wikihow.com | toptal.com | izenda.com | evidencebasedteaching.org.au