Computer programming has been described as the new literacy of the 21st century. It is an art form that requires students to utilize logic and higher level thinking skills such as analysis, synthesis, and application.
While some people I know feel that due to the tablet revolution proper typing is an outdated skill, I feel that proper keyboarding is even more critical in this day and age. Given how much time most of us spend using a keyboard, increasing your typing speed is a no-brainer way to increase your productivity.
It's no secret that I LOVE my Kindle. Pre-Kindle life in Japan revolved around reading other people's castoff books...you know the kind of books I'm talking about: Dan Brown, Tom Clancy, and the like. I could pretty much feel myself getting stupider and had begun drooling a lot. But, with the limited English selection here, I didn't have much choice until the Kindle came along.
If you've ever seen my TEDxTokyoTeachers talk, The Guitar and the Smarthphone, on the importance of teaching programming in schools, you'd know that I think teaching programming in schools is...well...important!
I recently replied to a discussion question on Tech Director, a forum for tech people in international schools. A member asked about what LMS (Learning Management System) we are use. Here is my (edited) response:
For those of you who don't know, Moodle is a fantastic, free, and open-source learning management system (LMS). We've been using it at my school for the past year or so - in particular this year use has really picked up. I recently asked one of our teachers to describe his Moodle use for our colleagues. His course page revolves around the course wiki but has links attractively presented on the main page.
At long last, my TEDxTokyoTeachers presentation is available for your viewing pleasure. :)
I have to admit that I was pretty nervous - a true rarity as I almost never get nervous about anything. I am glad that I was able to get my message out, make it through almost all of my lines, and even get a laugh or two.