Logo Elements of Methodology to Develop Structured Programming Terminology


Medve Anna,
University of Veszprém, Department of Mathematics and Computing
medve @almos.vein.hu


How can you teach structured programming playfully with the help of Logo language without using concepts of programming theory, with exercise - oriented programming with respect to age and educational tasks. I have been personally involved in Logo since ‘91.

I am going to summarise my experience from which I have drawn the conclusion that Logo is perfectly suitable for teaching it as a first language. The most essential result is the usage of simple, in playful way attained programming knowledge and the development of their cognitive ability, and the teaching of problem solving based on gradual approach.

The real task of the computing society I organised for 12 - 14 year old school children is based on house-design, landscape-design, robotics-design at the level of algorithmically abilities, then the construction of various attractive geometrical drawing has led to the development of terms and their conscious usage. To have some fun the students had to construct logo procedure tc of folk songs. Meanwhile they could easily of operating and text editing.

The most essential result is the usage of simple, in playful way attained programming knowledge and the development of their cognitive ability, and the teaching of problem solving that is based on gradual approach. Now let’s see a roughly list of the methodological elements of my approach:

the basic steps of turtle graphics: go, turn - FD, BK, RT, LF

+ usage of double . letter commands

+ the drawing appearing instantly

accustoming to machine operation and to logo environments

repetition of drawing tasks without typing in the instructions + speaking names

the drawing and the statements together point to the existence of repetition

formulation of turtle thesis

from the turtle thesis or from the drawing of proper polygons you give a clue to the 360 degrees/number of angles operation and for combinations

drawings that can be built from basic elements: house, robotman

turtle thesis becomes more visual preparation of concept of parameter

our procedures for drawing geometrical figures for the introduction of the concept of repetition can be easily used writing down parametricaly the square procedure applied many times before, the options of parametrically description and its meaning is taught from the introduction of the 360degree/(number of angles) ® polygon as a parameter

usage of parameter in operation ® common realisation of former concepts selfcalling procedure program interruption, intervention: store drawing concept of infinite program

selfstopping procedure, preparation of a nice drawing

the concept is introduced by a buffer and is fixed by drawing of further geometrical figures / :a-3 is written under zero, 360/ (:a-2) division by zero/

from the exercises built from elements and selfcalling procedure you conceptualise the typically geometrical figures / traitor, tree, mosaic construction, specific curves/

construction of messages, construction complex task based on the analysis of a multi-task problem

depending on age and intention with the wording of exercise and the personification of the turtle with words

I intend to start in the ‘97/98 schoolyear a well documented society experiment, involving university students, in an eight-year secondary school, in the group of 11-12 years old children, comparing them to a group of students who have never learnt programming before, analysing their algorithmic thinking with and without Logo programming. The aim of the experiments is the construction of methodological studies and society auxiliaries, and also to prove that Logo language as first programming language serves well the professional educational aims with the developing of concepts, with the guiding of the cognitive process with the help of an exercise -- oriented programming that fills in age and purpose.