Friday, August 7, 2009

the wow factor: Physics

For most of my students Physics has emerged as the wow factor of Sugar. This is good. Every new system needs a wow factor.

So, today I asked the students to make a game or other activity using Physics. They could work in groups of three, two or on their own. (I don't believe in forcing students to do group work). I also asked them to do a screenshot and write a description of their game or activity.

This turned into a fun lesson with some movement around the computing lab when things became exciting with some of the games that were developed. Some students asked for more time, "Can't we have a double lesson for this?" Some of the groups didn't manage to organise their blogs this time around.

No screenshots yet but look out for them in the student blogs in the next week or two.

I think the best option might be to run this again next Friday (single lesson) and leave the double lesson for new learning. It's good to have a fun activity to run on Friday, lesson 6, the final lesson of the week.

Towards the end a couple of students asked about how to "hack" Sugar. I see this as another teachable moment. I can explain how hacking is good thing and introduce them to the linux terminal.

update 8th August: Now I realise that Tony Forster planted the hacking seed in a comment he left on Mr. Unknown's blog. Also that student did try to visit the pygame site but due to school network problems :-( didn't quite get there.

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