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Video GameStart Uses Minecraft to Teach Kids Programming (Video 2) 18

As we said last week, "You can't teach all programming by using Minecraft to keep kids interested, but you can use Minecraft, Java, and Eclipse to give them a good start." That's what Tyler Kilgore and his colleagues at GameStart are doing. Watch today's video (number 2), go back to last week's video (number 1) if you missed it, and read both days' transcripts for the full scoop.
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GameStart Uses Minecraft to Teach Kids Programming (Video 2)

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  • Our advanced Minecraft Programmers use GameStart's proprietary TechMage mod to be able to write Python code for the PC version of Minecraft. TechMage is not yet released to the public, but we do offer a solution for practicing on a Pi at home.

    They sound awfully protective of their proprietary code. Hopefully they are more concerned about giving kids a braindead, easy system to use at home, and will eventually expand their scope to have something that can be run by kids on their PCs. Besides, anyone can wri

    • by Anonymous Coward

      I taught a high school class on Python. It was very hard for the students to learn. The required whitespace and lack of explicit blocks (no begin and end) was very confusing for them. Ever seen the bad indentation most students use in an intro to programming class? I don't think Python is the solution.

      • I very much agree with this. While proper use of whitespace is important for other programmers when reading the code, it shouldn't be anything that affects how the programming language is interpreted by the computer.

  • by xxxJonBoyxxx ( 565205 ) on Monday September 14, 2015 @03:38PM (#50521003)

    >> As we said last week, "...intrested, but yoi..."

    Yes, you did. Looks like someone fixed the original but eff'ed up part two of this snoozer.

    • by Roblimo ( 357 )

      I've been working sick, and it shows. Thanks for noticing the typo, now corrected.

  • My daughter (11) has done several classes and camps at gamestart. She produced some working code for a minor plugin on python, and in their more advanced class wrote a plugin in Java. She's mostly lost interest in the coding, but I don't think that's Gamestart's fault. They also have some digital art classes using photoshop & doing 2d & 3d animation - she's done some of that and enjoyed it.
  • ...but then you teach them that programming environments look like Eclipse. I'd be an MBA right now if that was the first thing I'd seen when getting into programming.
  • Don't Distract New Programmers with OOP: []

    OOP Isn't a Fundamental Particle of Computing: []

    My 10 yr old has had a few sparks of interest to try using the shell on her Linux box (she's only ever used Linux, except for occasional fiddling on my Surface Pro when we're out and about. She's nearly a Gimp expert, self-taught). I've given her some elementary shell command instruction and guidance, plus some tricks to play with hoping to inspire m

Do not underestimate the value of print statements for debugging.