Thursday, October 13, 2011

warm hand to warm hand

There's a wide variety of things I know a fair bit about. My housemate in Chile, Steve, often remarked on how exciting it was to randomly discover things like
  • I was on the diving team in high school (varsity one year, because there were only 4 divers and one guy broke his foot).
  • I did archery for a while.
  • I learned ceramics and jewelry-making for about a year.
  • I know a lot about blacksmithing.
  • I'm a very good cook.
  • I helped crew a sailboat in Mexico for 3 months.
  • I once moved to Wisconsin to become a professional a cappella singer.
The list goes on like that.

It turns out, though, that my general hobby is dilettantism, and there are far fewer things I know well enough to teach in any depth:
  • sailing
  • aikido
  • computer programming
I've been pretty excited about teaching J how to program, because I think he'll love it and it's something I really enjoy. I finally got the chance, when J talked about to Anna and he was incredibly excited about it last night, so tonight he took his entire hour of allotted Computer Time to playing with Scratch, a simple graphical programming environment designed for this purpose. I had all of 15 minutes to mess with it last night before cracking it open with J today.

He was SO EXCITED. I couldn't stand it. I would direct him to something, like a loop or an instruction to change the picture's color or whatever, and he would start playing around with it and telling a story, flailing with excitement every time he made something happen. That's a big part of the joy of programming: you think something, type into the computer, and the computer does things. Later on, you make many computers do things. Often in a coordinated fashion. It just gets better and better.

So awesome. For a whole hour!

Now I have to learn how to use the thing so I can teach him more stuff. =)

1 comment:

  1. I know you're not allowed to teach it yet, but I find your discussion of zen concepts very useful, accessible, and interesting. Just sayin'.