Learning to Learn

This has been an amazing week for studying. Despite a very busy seven days, I was able to stay centered and move through the fray without getting bogged down in stress.

The Command Line Crash Course is 3/4 of the way complete and I continue to reinforce command line study with memorization games using Quizlet.com.  On Team Treehouse’s ‘Become a Web Developer’ track, I’ve garnered  2,061 total points and 33 achievements by completing CSS Foundations and Introduction to Programming using JavaScript. There were two Python (PyLadies) Meetups this week that granted time for finishing two chapters of Runestone’s online interactive version of How to Think Like a Computer Scientist. The site features short videos, activecode examples, interactive questions, opportunities to interact with other learners to discuss homework, and a fantastic tool called Codelens that helps you develop a mental model of how Python works. The homework is done right in the textbook online. So many positive things to say about the interactive version of this book, you should definitely check it out!

screenshot for the interactive online version of the Python book entitled How to Think Like a Computer Scientist

screenshot for the interactive online version of the Python book entitled How to Think Like a Computer Scientist

Additionally, I finished Chapter 4 of Social Intelligence (very interesting read!), Lessons 10 & 11 of Reasoning Skills Success and finished one problem set of 501 Challenging Logic Reasoning Problems (I’ve missed 7 of 314 problems). There was also an Angular JavaScript lecture by the Austin All-Girl Hack Night. The benefits were clouded a bit by my ignorance so it was more about showing up and meeting the other lady programmers.

For several weeks, I’ve put off acknowledging the need to improve math skills to feel more comfortable as a programmer. I hadn’t mentioned it here simply because I didn’t want to think about it. Math took a left turn for me somewhere in high school and there’s been a negative association ever since. So when I stumbled upon Stanford’s online class called How to Learn Math, it sounded like a second chance: ‘The course is a short intervention designed to change students’ relationships with math,.. causing students to re-engage successfully with math via a ‘Growth Mindset’, taking a new approach to the subject and their learning.’ Presently, the course is designed for teachers and other helpers of math learners, such as parents. The creator of the class, Jo Boaler (Professor of Math Education at Stanford University) will release a student version of the course (likely) in the fall. Already this class is proving effective in adjusting my mindset regarding perspectives around learning (not just math) and expanding my capabilities. I plan to create a post later this week to elaborate on the class takeaway.

Other new goals for this week: 1) Create an outline for a webpage to hold important study links and design tools; 2) Start Khan Academy’s ‘The World of Math’ course (which apparently has been redesigned around the Growth Mindset model touted by Jo Boaler; 3) Begin the first two chapters of Python Essential Reference (4th Edition) for an Austin Learn Python Meetup.

I’ll end with John Cleese answering the question ‘What is creativity and how to stimulate it’. Have a wonderful week!

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