Introduce a (sometimes silly) back-story for why students need to write particular methods to motivate them and see how their work might be needed in industry jobs.

  • For example, when creating a rectangle class, tell students that the company you work for isn’t happy with the existing Java Rectangle class and it needs new functionality such as getArea().
    • If some students are interested in making video games, show them how hey could make an animated rectangle, to show how what they’re doing connects to making video games.
  • File I/O isn’t on the AP guidelines, but consider introducing it anyway as students may be curious about saving a "high scores" list in a video game.
    • Tell students that Google wants to know the frequencies of the letters in a book, and which letter of the alphabet is most popular so they can display the answers in search results.
      • You’ll need to find a short book as a text file online for this activity.
      • Have students create a program to read through the book and count the frequencies of each letter.
      • This is a relatively boring task, but with the backstory students become interested and the task is suddenly exciting.

More about this tip

External Source

Interview with Brandon R. Rodriguez