8/28/2005

Teaching someone to program

I've been after my husband to learn programming. He'd be so good at it, he's so smart. I tried teaching him HTML, which is actually pretty BORING. He was not too interested. SO I said, ok fine.. we'll learn HTML as needed (templates where possible, using Dreamweaver), I'll start with PHP instead. I thought, what is the first thing to teach? He told me he wanted to learn something and build on and keep building on from there.

I'm learning Ruby too, so when I was thinking, ok how do I learn ruby? I fired it up and did some simple things to see how it worked.

For a very first lesson .. for him on PHP and me on Ruby, I made a simple list

1. Define a string.
2. Print a string.
3. Learn how to write a function and call it.
4. Use the function to print a string.
5. Throw in the < br / > tag to display line endings in html.

For Lesson Two, I have this planned.
1. Define variables.
2. Print a variable.
3. Learn IF statement
4. Conditionally display a variable based on another variables value.


That’s it so far, I was going to look through my Deitel and Deitel Java 2 How to Program book to find some halfway decent and interesting programming exercises and programs to assign to "us" and see if we can do it in php. I think the first project will be a simple app to add two numbers, with input boxes. Then from there, I want to write a application to determine the winner/loser in an attack in his favorite card game, VS. That should prove to be a little more interesting and its something where he already understands the algorithm. :)

Anybody else have any insight in teaching someone to program?

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