modelingUniverse 2012
Shodor > SUCCEED > Workshops > Archive > modelingUniverse 2012

Today in the Modeling Your Universe workshop, the students started off with a session called "How Do You Know". Students were asked questions such as how do you know something is right or how do you know if something is good (ie: good to eat) or not. They did an exercise involving jars of spaghetti sauce in which the students decided what qualities made spaghetti sauce good to eat or not. They brainstormed requirements such as: if it smelled nice, if the lid was shut, and if it was not past its expiration date. They observed a spaghetti sauce jar that had been opened, but still had a sealed lid. The students were able to tell it had been opened as the jar was filled with some sort of clear liquid instead of spaghetti sauce. They did similar activities with straws and the mass of Pluto. With the straws, they were given a box of straws that supposedly had forty straws in it. They were told to count the straws in their box, and say if they did NOT have forty straws in it. During the Pluto exercise, the students searched up the mass of Pluto online, and see if all of the answers they got were the same or not. The object of the activities was to teach them to be observant of things and validating information. After that, they talked about modeling. They talked about what it is, and they looked at a NetLogo disease model on the Shodor website. The students altered the model to see who could kill the most people by changing parameters such as how many doctors there were, the fatality rate, and the number of people in the model.

The students also learned about Terminal. They learned many commands, such as how to list all of their directories, make new directories, and change in between directories. Within these directories, they learned how to create new files, remove files, move one file to another folder, copy files, and how to edit files. Tomorrow, they are going to continue to work in Terminal.