Can a Computer Science teacher force students to do my programming assignment? That is one of the questions that comes to most students mind when I ask them. I have found that in my many years teaching computer science and also as a long time personal friend of computer science students, they do appreciate a helping hand sometimes. That being said, there are some things that a teacher can do to help students do their assignments.
A teacher can get involved by asking if students would be willing to help with the labs or would they prefer to have the lab instructor to work with the students directly. Another thing that a teacher can do is make labs more interactive. One way to do this is to have a picture frame and set it up so that the student can look at the drawing that he has made while working with his code. Let the student put his artwork on the screen and then have the picture taken by a student to use as a reference. This will not only make the assignment more interesting, but will also allow the student some freedom to come up with his own designs.
Encourage students to help with the projects. Don’t just give students tasks; ask them to actively participate. Give them some latitude, to let them decide how long they want the project to take. Encourage students to take ownership over their work.
Help students develop their talents and find out what they are good at. For example, you might encourage a student to make a sketch of what he or she thinks the future might hold. Have him or her complete the sketch with a deadline to get it printed as a draft for feedback. Then have the student bring the completed sketch to his or her computer and use it as the basis for a paper on calculus.
Encourage students to talk about their projects and try to help each other out. If a student has trouble with a piece of code, for example, tell him or her how to fix it so that he or she can work on other assignments. Don’t be critical of fellow students, but do think about their homework, too. Having some computer-related help can be tremendously valuable for students who struggle.
Don’t forget to reward students when they do a good job. They may need a little extra incentive to continue learning and working with others. Students love to be recognized for the effort and competence. Recognition for hard work is a natural way for computer science students to build confidence.
Encourage students to share what they have learned with others. Offer to help tutor others if they need help with their projects or exams. Or join a study group or online forum. Not only will this make them feel more confident in their own ability, but it will also help them make friends.
Make it clear to your student’s parents that you want to encourage them to pursue a higher education. Take the initiative to go along with them. Tell their parents why pursuing computer science could be a good choice for their child. Tell this them that you wish to encourage a lifelong career in this field. Encourage your student and his or her friends to pursue an advanced degree as well. You’ll be glad you did!
If you have a child who is just starting out in high school and is having trouble making friends, don’t be afraid to start earlier. Don’t wait until they turn 16. Even younger children can be made to feel “important” by participating in clubs, sports, and other activities. Invite your child to become a member of the school computer club. This will show him or her that the school cares about them and are eager to promote their studies.
Try to get all the students to support the child. Offer to take them shopping or somewhere else on their days off. Show your child that his or her friends are important to you and that they are loved. Let them know that their friends mean the world to them and that they can rely on them. It will make them feel better about themselves and their life in general.
There are many ways to encourage students in your computer science class to become close. All it takes is a little effort. You might want to sit down with each one of them and tell them what their friends think of them. If they are having a hard time making friends, then you might be able to help them overcome that.