Felienne is a professor of Computer Science Education at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. She also works as a high-school CS teacher one day a week at Lyceum Kralingen in the Codasium program.
Felienne is the creator of theHedy programming language, and the author of The Programmer’s Brain, a book that helps programmers understand how their brain works and how to use it more effectively. In 2021, Felienne was awarded Dutch Prize for ICT research..
NewCrafts Paris 2023
Hedy: gradual and multilingual programming for education
When kids learn to program they often use either a visual language like Scratch, or a textual language like Python. While visual languages are great for the first steps, children and educators often want to move on to textual languages. However, early on, a textual language and its error messages can be scary. Hedy aims bridge this gap with a programming language that is gradual, using different language levels.
In level 1, there is hardly any syntax at all; printing is done with: print hello Newcrafts!
At every level, new syntax and concepts are added, so learners do not have to master everything at once. Hedy builds up to a subset of Python including conditions, loops, variables and lists.
To make learning as accessible as possible, Hedy also allows for the use of localized keywords, f.e in Spanish: imprimir Hello!
Hedy (www.hedy.org) was launched in early 2020 and over 5 million Hedy progams have been created to date, and has been translated into 47 languages.
In this talk, Felienne will dive into the pedagogy behind Hedy, but also expand on the technical aspects of Hedy. For example, a set of increasingly complex grammars, rather than one grammar, poses new challenges for language design and multilingual programming is not easy to build with current frameworks