Have students use a spiral notebook to keep track of important information to enhance their understanding of topics by writing down the material.

  • Writing down material improves memory retention, which is why this is a good technique to use for recording important content.
    • Make it clear to students what information should be written down (e.g., ArrayList instantiation, ArrayList methods, etc.).
  • Build small topic sections for students to use so that their notebooks are well organized and easy to find information in.
    • This is preferable to having students write all their notes for a topic, like ArrayList, under one large section.
    • This also allows for easy review of syntax later in the course
  • If you want students to use a specific template, be sure to provide it to them.
  • Review notebooks in class to ensure that everyone knows what should have been written down.
  • Writing these things down gives students practice handwriting code, which is a very useful tool.
    • This tool is particularly helpful for the Free Response section of AP CS A exam, though it also can help facilitate easier communication with other code writers.
  • Check out the example notebook entry on arrays in Java for a template to have students use:
Arrays Instantiation int[] arr = new int[5];
index 0 1 2 3 4
value 0 0 0 0 0

String[] student = {"daniel","mark","mike","robert"};
0 1 2 3
daniel mark mike robert

Access: Generic syntax for one spot (index) in the array: nameOfArray[index] Example: System.out.println(student[0]); ⇒ prints daniel arr[3] = 7;⇒ assigns the value 7 to spot 3. Generic call to return the number of items in array: name.length Example: System.out.println(student.length) ⇒ prints 4 **WATCH OUT** arr[arr.length] ⇒ OUT OF BOUNDS ERROR! arr[arr.length-1]⇒ Correct, fixes the out of bounds error. Accessing all elements of array (Printing): for(int i=0;i<arr.length; i++) System.out.println(arr[i]); Advanced for loop to print: for(int val:arr) System.out.println(val); Typical algorithms used with an array: //not shown, but could include finding biggest value, smallest value.

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External Source

Interview with Aaron Cadle