[ANN] Fun programming with your kids

John Pfersich jp1660 at att.net
Sun May 29 22:19:48 UTC 2005

Gee, there are no used copies yet!!! :^(

So what does the cover look like?
 -------------- Original message ----------------------
From: stéphane ducasse <ducasse at iam.unibe.ch>
> Hi
> If you are a parent, an educator or a programmer having kids this is  
> for you! After 4 years of work, my new book "Squeak: Learn  
> programming with Robots" will be out soon
> http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1590594916/ 
> qid=1117218524/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-5642974-5143261?v=glance&s=books
> http://smallwiki.unibe.ch/botsinc/
> With Bots Inc you will learn how to program robots in an interactive  
> environment. Bots Inc proposes three teaching approaches: direct  
> command of robots, scripting robots and programming robots. The book  
> contains 24 chapters going step by step over topics with a lot of  
> examples. Bots Inc is fun but it is not a toy, it teaches you 100%  
> real programming in Smalltalk: a pure object-oriented programming  
> language that has been copied by Java. Bots Inc is built on top of  
> the rich open-source multimedia Squeak environment that you can also  
> discover.
> My goal is to explain key elementary programming concepts (such as  
> loops, abstraction, composition, and conditionals) to novices of all  
> ages. I believe that learning by experimenting and solving problems  
> with fun is central to human knowledge acquisition. Therefore, I have  
> presented programming concepts through simple but not trivial  
> problems such as drawing golden rectangles or simulating animal  
> behavior. The ideal reader I have in mind is an individual who wants  
> to have fun programming. This person may be a teenager or an adult, a  
> schoolteacher, or somebody teaching programming to children in some  
> other organization. Such an individual does not have to be fluent in  
> programming in any language. As a father of two young boys I also  
> wrote this book for all the parents that want to have fun programming  
> with their kids in a powerful interactive environment. Programming in  
> Smalltalk is an interactive, fun but deep experience.
> Testimonies
> "I am using the version of the book on your web site to teach my  
> oldest daughter Becca some programming. She absolutely loves it. We  
> are doing the Bot graphics right. My other kids are showing interest  
> as well. My Fall semester schedule leaves me with almost no time free  
> but in the Spring I hope to bring Squeak and your book to our  
> elementary school's "gifted" program." C. David Shaffer
> "I'm using the Bot Lab environment for three years and found it  
> really valuable in teaching computer science concepts for a young  
> audience (and even less young !). The bots commanded through balloon  
> (as in comic strips) is a very nice introduction for young children,  
> and when this aspect is well understood, you can use the Bot  
> Workspace to teach the notion of script, a first step in programming  
> languages. The Micro Browser allows children to add new behavior for  
> their bots, and have fun with their creation. This three-layers tool  
> - Balloon, Micro Workspace, Micro Browser - offers to the teacher a  
> fun way to introduce gently the basis of object-oriented programming  
> concepts. With Bots Inc, learning is playing ! ;-)" Samir Saidani -  
> University of Caen - France
> "I recently started a course with 7th-graders (age about 13 years)  
> with Stephane's book --- they love it. They all know about syntactic  
> issues from maths --- in a way they know that an expression in a  
> formal language must be well formed. So they easily grasp the fact  
> such as "there must be a colon after the message-name if an argument  
> follows". Of cause they don't really read the error-messages, they  
> just see "there must be some error" and they remember the simple  
> rules. Don't underestimate Smalltalk --- it's easy understandable  
> because it has a simple and straight-forward design." Klaus Fuller -  
> Germany
> Have fun...please distribute
> Stef
> http://www.iam.unibe.ch/~ducasse/
>   "if you knew today was your last day on earth, what would you
>   do different? ...  especially if,  by doing something different,
>   today might not be your last day on earth" Calvin&Hobbes

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