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On 05/24/2012 12:01 AM, Marc Paré wrote:
Hi Doug,

Le 2012-05-23 11:41, Doug a écrit :

Spreadsheets (LibreOffice Calc) are confusing even to those who are
comfortable with algebra.  The notation is clumsy!  I wouldn't think
that is something that should be inflicted upon kids under 13!

In our school, we teach:
MSWord -- starting in grade 4
PowerPoint -- starting in grade 5
Excel -- starting in grade 7

There is no reason to get kids to work with spreadsheets even as early as grade 6 (11 yrs of age) in a school setting. They are ready for this and do quite well. In fact many math text books will have for assignments work that is asked to be represented inside a spreadsheet. This is quite common in math studies, and, at the elementary school level. Whether or not these are undertaken rests on the ability of the classroom instructor.

LibreOffice in this context makes for a great learning tool.


I also usually am part of a teacher-team for lego robotics and we start training our kids who join the lego-club as of grade 4 (9 yrs of age), we also join competitions with the kids after less than 6 months of working with the robotics kits (even if this is a very simple programming language). It give enough experience at basic programming to get them interested in perhaps going further in highschool

I also taught logo programming to kids as of grade 4 through 8 in a "school club" setting, and by the end of grade 8, students were able to do self-programmed "slideshows" and one team even created their own font and had the alphabet run through their font as a slideshow with letter flying around their screen.

I have also taught logo to a grade 2 class over the span of a year with a lot of success. The kids loved it.

There is normally a long waiting list to get into the clubs and some teachers hoping to help even have to wait to join for lack of hardware. The clubs are very popular.

Kids are awesome learning sponges!



Thanx for the input, Marc. As an engineer (now retired) I always found ways NOT to use a spreadsheet unless it was some kind of scheduling or accounting problem. There are so many math programs that treat math like you would write it on paper. But I suppose if you are taught from the cradle, as it were, to use Excel you will be used to it.

Logo! I haven't heard that word in thirty years, at least! I'm surprised it's still around. Never really got into it, but it seemed like fun, at least from a distance. I started using BASIC, and then learned and used Pascal. Not being (professionally) a programmer, I never
learned C.


Blessed are the peacekeepers...for they shall be shot at from both sides. --A.M. Greeley

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