Tuesday, 9 September 2008

a look at 2009

we have just received our numbers for 2009, and they are scary. Programming is taking a huge amount of students, and this is causing some concern for me. Why are they taking this subject, what do we have to offer our students and what do they think they will be doing next year. Too many students cause headaches for staff due to knowledge, understanding and resources.

I am thinking about creating a survey to ask these students hwa they thought about this year and what they want to do next year. With NCEA you can do just about anything, with some limitaitions, we cannot create a killing machine, but we can create a lego robot with attachments that can kill other robots. But what do they want to do and what do I have to learn to help with that. Of course I still have to cover some computer science curriculum, but do we have one at the moment to cover, no. We are still waiting for the digital Technologies Guidelines, and other various groups to get together and hash something out for Computer science.

Some of the things this year we have had to put extra permissions on the machines to get XNA to run. This would probably need to go over two classes next year. I would like to have RM Smart tools removed and a back to basic winXP operating system, or dare I say Vista installed on the machines. On its own subnet so the security issues and control still remain with us. This would allow us to do Hacker High School and do some more techniques than this year. Also the hassle of getting virtual machines and software installed on the RMSmartTools network has caused headaches and work arounds. Maybe the students could access a terminal server is they needed to do their work.

One of the projects that I would like to do is listed here, http://techreport.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=31609
It is to develop and underwater ROV.

More to come
Another one I would like to do is to create our own version of the touch screen. The reason for this will be apparent later on next year. There must be something out there that we can use to do this, look at what we have managed to do with a wii remote and something a little more like a tv remote.
Other ideas I am sure will come up.
But along the lines of XNA development is that Rob Miles the writer of one of the books that we use to develop XNA development is writing a curriculum which is mainly  powerpoint slides, why powerpoint, why not keynote? as well as some extra resources to help teachers develop this topic with their students. Sounds like a good idea.

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