Introduction to software developer profession for teens

Carmen Bianca Bakker carmenbianca at
Mon Nov 20 14:37:47 UTC 2017

Hi Vitaly,

Vitaly Repin schreef op ma 20-11-2017 om 15:53 [+0200]:
> This Sunday I will have an 1 hour workshop with the teens (age 14-18)
> with the purpose to explain them what software developer profession is
> about. 

That's quite short for a workshop.  What will they be doing, and how
many of them will attend?

> I found this opportunity as a very interesting but also challenging. I
> plan to tell them also about FOSS and possibilities to  study
> programming by participating in different FOSS projects.

The angle of using Free Software as a self-study tool is good :) I am
not quite sure how you could fit a proper explanation of Free Software
into that hour and also use it to teach them about software engineering,
though.  I feel like it might be a disservice to either topic if one
impeded too much on the time of the other.

Perhaps use the hour primarily to teach about software engineering, and
use any extra time with individual students to bring up the ethics
involved in software?

Also, pretty please make sure to mention this at least:

- Liking video games is NOT a valid reason to study software
  engineering, and being a video game developer is a stressful,
  oversaturated, underpaid job.

- You do not need to be good at maths to be a decent software engineer.
  Being able to communicate (write) clearly and unambiguously is a much
  better asset for a software engineer, as this is exactly what coding
  is.  If you can write an accurate tutorial that describes how to boil
  an egg that includes all the steps required (even the often-overlooked
  ones!) in such a way that anybody can understand it effortlessly, and
  can follow those steps without having to do any additional thinking of
  their own, then you possess THE vital skill for programming.

The first should hopefully scare off gamers who would have a miserable
time doing software engineering.

The second should hopefully invite people who aren't maths geniuses, but
who are communicatively very strong.

I hope this was helpful.  Thank you for introducing the wonderful world
of hacking to teens!

a software engineering student

Carmen Bianca Bakker
Technical Intern
Free Software Foundation Europe e.V.
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