About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 6335-6341
Publication year: 2020
ISBN: 978-84-09-17939-8
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2020.1709

Conference name: 14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 2-4 March, 2020
Location: Valencia, Spain


D. Krpan, S. Mladenović, G. Zaharija, M. Aglić Čuvić

University of Split, Faculty of Science (CROATIA)
Learning programming using text-based languages is difficult for most novice programmers regardless of their age. That perception has a negative effect on motivation and unfortunately, their first experience with programming often confirms it. Novice programmers have to develop complex skills like problem-solving and abstract thinking, learn and understand programming concepts together with artificial language syntax while trying to grasp an overwhelming developing environment. Using simpler programming languages and environments is the attempt to make programming more approachable for novices. Block-based programming languages play an important role in lowering the barrier towards programming by taking a step further and removing syntax issues. However, using block-based languages is not a magic solution that might solve everything. It is very important to choose the age-appropriate first programming language and development environment, and also to connect learning experience with the real-life context. Using block-based programming too early or too late may both fail. Some authors suggest replacing visual blocks with physical objects, so children may start learning programming earlier than expected by their age or computer skills. Such languages are referred to as tangible programming languages. The key is to connect concrete tangible objects with programming concepts. There are some suggestions that for some students the top level of programming expertise will be using block-based languages, but others with the potential of moving further often have the problem of transferring knowledge and skills learned from blocks to the text-based programming language. It seems that with each new language teachers start everything from the beginning. In this paper, we provide a short overview of age-appropriate languages and didactic tools for teaching programming, which we developed and used in practice. One of the tools presented here is a tangible programming language designed for teaching programming and computational thinking to young novice programmers. The other language which we have developed is a block-based language that enables mediated transfer to different text-based programming languages. The block-based programming community and the number of projects available online are rapidly growing. Teachers who use block-based languages in their classes may encounter evaluation issues. Some authors suggest automatic graders for block-based languages with a similar approach used in text-based languages, so we have made an analysis and comparison of automatic and real teacher project evaluation.
author = {Krpan, D. and Mladenović, S. and Zaharija, G. and Aglić Čuvić, M.},
series = {14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2020 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-09-17939-8},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2020.1709},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2020.1709},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {2-4 March, 2020},
year = {2020},
pages = {6335-6341}}
AU - D. Krpan AU - S. Mladenović AU - G. Zaharija AU - M. Aglić Čuvić
SN - 978-84-09-17939-8/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2020.1709
PY - 2020
Y1 - 2-4 March, 2020
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2020 Proceedings
SP - 6335
EP - 6341
ER -
D. Krpan, S. Mladenović, G. Zaharija, M. Aglić Čuvić (2020) MEDIATED TRANSFER FROM BLOCKS TO TEXT-BASED PROGRAMMING, INTED2020 Proceedings, pp. 6335-6341.