Alfred "interviewed" me at http://blog.acthompson.net/2013/06/cs-educator-interview-kathleen-weaver.html?spref=tw and I thought there would be more back and forth but maybe this is the way to do it.
Texas has TEKS for every course, a list of things we are supposed to address. The Tech Apps and CS course TEKS are listed here: http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/rules/tac/chapter126/ch126c.html
Our district has curriculum planning guides but they are going away. That means they won't be updated, but that also means that they can't make me throw mine away. Two other teachers wrote a document that is worth about 4 weeks' worth of class, maybe more that is mostly social networking. I took our old CPG, took out the software and aligned it to old TEKS and made it available to the rest of the group.
We also have a final exam that is provided by the district that is used to assess the principals and the school, and I spent some time on about 10 years ago. I've been vetting it, and complaining about questions but haven't been listened to in a while. That makes up 15% of the semester grade. It is also supposed to be used to evaluate me next year. I am supposed to be writing questions for it. We'll have to see if any of my input is listened to. So far I am not optimistic.
Do I sound frustrated?
The way I teach the class, and the way I have designed the class, is that we have students design web pages while teaching them HTML, CSS, and the software that is available to use it. Last year, I used Expression Web and Adobe CS 4. Why Adobe CS4? There are massive test questions on it. Also Flash. Why Flash? There are massive test questions on Flash.
The part that frustrates students, is that we have them write web pages that they can use. Here is a list:
- Write an About Me web page
- Write a Greeting Card web page with images
- Create a vacation website using a common external style sheet
- Write a Client Web Site for a client you pick
- Create a logo for yourself
- Create a banner for yourself
- Create a Portfolio showing all the work you did in the course
The part the hate the most is coming up with original ideas. They really just want to copy something that someone else did, but then isn't the course, just a weird typing class?
Oh, and guess what I get – 5 or 6 of the same web sites – pounding head against wall.
Hopefully I'll feel better in August.