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B1XIdentify target audience for ACM crossroads computer science education article {{Tasks:1}} (2003.11.09)


On Reading

Where would I be - indeed, who would I be - without my love for reading?

Among my friends, my appetite for books is well-known. They obligingly lend me all sorts of reading material - from philosophy to fiction, from children's books to encyclopedic references.

It surprises me how many people avow an earnest dislike of books. I suspect that is because they had to learn how to read in school and thereupon hated it simply because it was an imposition. On the other hand, I was fortunate enough to have a mother who took me in her arms and read me fairy tales until she grew hoarse from exhaustion.

I used to read my parents' books on parenting children. This made life somewhat strange. I felt somewhat cheated out of a genuine teenage crisis. I wondered when I would get to cry (with appropriate angst, of course) that universal teenage anthem, "You don't understand me at all!" Ah, no; I had read both the parent's side and the teenager's side, and found myself concurring with the former.

So I'd like to take this opportunity to thank my mom who never tired of reading "The Three Little Pigs" to me even though she knew I could very well read it upside down.

On Holidays

I have come to the conclusion that a holiday should not be treated as a day to catch up on work - or sleep, for that matter. The hours seem to pass much faster during holidays. One hour blurs into the next and it is night before I notice. Little work is done. To top it all off, I feel guilty about spending the day indoors, cooped up, doing the same things I always do. It is a holiday, after all - a day meant for relaxation and celebration. Yet when I relax, I feel guilty about not working - such is the peril of setting aside a holiday for work!

I am of the firm belief that holidays should be memorable. They should be a refreshing break from the humdrum monotony of our everyday lives. A holiday's benefit, indeed, is that break from the everyday world (hints of Marcel?) and a chance to contemplate what matters. Recharged, then, I should be ready to tackle the challenges of the workplace with renewed vigor.

I resolve to live the next holiday. I shall use the day to get in touch with old friends or revive old hobbies. It will be a day to experiment, to reflect, to celebrate life. It will be a day to remember.

Why I Want To Learn How To Teach

From 2003.05.06

I love computer science. I want to help other people learn as much about computer science as they can so that they can enjoy it as much as I do. I want them to not only learn the tools and techniques we teach in class, but also develop the discipline of thinking logically and the ability to learn on their own.

In order to do that, it is not enough to know the subject well. I also need to know how to teach effectively - how to engage and excite students, how to draw out their questions and guide them to answers. I want to be able to reach each student - not as a faceless, nameless crowd I teach to, but as individuals from whom I can learn and with whom I can share what I know.

It will not be easy. Not all my lessons will proceed according to plan. Not all the examples I use will be clear and understandable. But armed with a passiono for the field and a desire to help people learn effectively, I hope to do the best I can.

I believe that formal training in education - from formulating lesson plans to assessing student accomplishments - will help me become a more effective teacher. With its emphasis on Ignatian ideals such as "magis" and "cura personalis", an Atenean education will help me learn how to help prepare other people to be men and women for others.

Article draft for Crossroads issue on Computer Science Education: Making the Most of Tutorials

computer science education in small colleges constructivist learning mentoring women in computer science

Notes for submission: http://www.acm.org/crossroads/submit

Feature: 1500 ~ 6000 words Opinion columns: 800 ~ 3000 words

Audience: other students


Tutorials are an excellent way

as an organizer

original text