Introducing informatics concepts through a contest

V. Dagiene,G. Futschek:
"Introducing informatics concepts through a contest";
Vortrag: IFIP Working Conference: New Developments in ICT and Education, Amiens; 28.06.2010 - 30.06.2010; in:"IFIP Working Conference: New Developments in ICT and Education", Universite de Picardie Jules Verne, Amiens (2010), ISBN: 978-2-9537285-1-4; Paper-Nr. 07, 15 S.

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Abstract:


Concepts of informatics play a central role in all curricula and standards for informatics education at secondary schools. In practice at schools however very often the training of skills in application software is given much more room than the understanding of fundamental concepts of informatics. The reasons for that may be manifold: lack of time, missing teacher education, missing materials, pressure from industry, etc. In this paper, we are going to show how informatics concepts may be introduced to schools in a student-motivated and playful way. By the example of an international informatics contest we present how a contest may introduce a variety of even advanced concepts in a very short time. And about that the students need no specific pre-knowledge and learn in an explorative way to solve the given contest problems. A main focus while preparing a contest should be given to the development of good tasks that also can be used by the students and teachers in their further learning and teaching activities.