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What beginners teach us - New Relic FutureTalk

What beginners teach us - New Relic FutureTalk

This talk is about what I've learned from teaching adults how to program in Python for the first time. Mostly lessons learned from PyLadies workshops, with an additional section on how PostgreSQL does code review, and how I think this teaches the fundamental skill of code reading, a basic code literacy skill everyone needs to go from being a novice to an expert programmer.

Selena Deckelmann

May 12, 2014

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  1. “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the

    expert’s mind, there are few.” -Shunryu Suzuki Tuesday, May 13, 14
  2. take a moment and consider... How will the beginner feel

    when they hear your answer? Tuesday, May 13, 14
  3. our job as teacher is to answer... “What do I

    do next?” Tuesday, May 13, 14
  4. “The unwritten first chapter” Big goals Early wins In-person connections

    Cultivate a learning environment Tuesday, May 13, 14
  5. • New skills • Peer support • Structure and routine

    • Confidence What PyLadies say they get: Tuesday, May 13, 14
  6. • Submission review (skills needed: patch, English comprehension) • Usability

    review (skills needed: test-fu, ability to find and read spec) • Feature test (skills needed: patch, configure, make, pipe errors to log) Tuesday, May 13, 14
  7. • Performance review (skills needed: ability to time performance) •

    Coding review (skills needed: guideline comparison, experience with portability issues, minor C-reading skills) • Architecture review (skills needed: experience with whole-PostgreSQL- project architecture) Tuesday, May 13, 14
  8. • Review review (skills needed: ability to follow the Review

    A Patch documentation) Tuesday, May 13, 14
  9. “[N]on-trivial change should be discussed (potentially before the code is

    even written) on the pgsql- hackers list before being submitted as a patch.” Tuesday, May 13, 14
  10. “I didn’t grow up thinking I could do anything I

    wanted to.” Tuesday, May 13, 14
  11. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution- ShareAlike

    3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 444 Castro Street, Suite 900, Mountain View, California, 94041, USA. All photos are © by owners. PyLadies photos shared with permission. Tuesday, May 13, 14