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TigerJython consists of online teaching materials and a development environment specially designed for education. The online teaching materials begin with turtle graphics, but then continue on with topics reaching from the programming of Lego robots, multimedia, and computer games to databases and stochastic simulations. TigerJython is suitable for use both in the classroom and for self-study due to its modular structure and its numerous examples and exercises. The first chapters can already be used in introductory computer science courses in elementary schools (in Switzerland S1). As a whole, the choice of topics and the material's scope correspond to a basic course of computer science at grammar schools.

The authors are convinced that education in computer science contributes essentially to the intellectual development of adolescents. In our opinion, it should already be taught in primary schools no later than at the age of 12-13 years old, in order to awaken an early enjoyment and interest in logical and technical thinking in pupils.

The first version of the teaching materials were developed in 2013, and this is now the second version with revised and corrected materials. Throughout these materials we have incorporated our years of experience with students, as well as our experience in educating computer science teaching staff. Our intention was always to develop the interest and enjoyment of algorithmic problem solving in girls and boys, and to support teachers.

In this teaching material, any barriers that might prevent someone from entering into programming are deliberately kept very low, and throughout, the TigerJython programming environment and the Python programming language are used. The teaching material was formed from a single mold, so to speak. Much of the content comes from daily environments and problem situations in other school subjects. This way, the knowledge from computer science class can be applied to other disciplines as well.

Although Python was developed by Dutchman Guido van Rossum already over 20 years ago, it has only really become used in schools in recent years and is now experiencing a real 'hype' in many training institutions. This may be because Python as an interpreted language with its global scope is very easy to learn, but also because Python can work with very few computer resources and even runs on micro systems. Also, with our development environment TigerJython we offer a student-friendly environment that is balanced between simplicity and professionalism. In our opinion, it is particularly well suited for a computer science class for the following reasons:

Installation on Windows/Mac/Linux consists of copying a single file to the computer. This way, instructors can immediately start teaching, even in computer labs without administrator rights
The IDE is so simple that absolutely no introductory instruction is necessary for its operation. Particularly, there is no need to create projects
TigerJython performs a precise error analysis of the program, and outputs error messages that are understandable by novice programmers
TigerJython contains numerous additional modules that are specifically tailored for the classroom, such as turtle graphics, coordinate graphics, robotics, and game programming

We hope that with TigerJython and the online teaching materials we are able to pass on some of our enthusiasm for education in computer science.

We want to thank all of those who contributed to the success of TigerJython with suggestions and feedback, namely Walter Gander (ETH Zürich), Juraj Hromkovic (ETH Zürich), Theo Heußer (Gymnasium Hemsbach), Urs Hochstrasser (former Federal Office for Education and Science, Bern).

We also thank Kristin and Florian Thalmann for the excellent English translation.

October 2014. Jarka Arnold, Tobias Kohn, Aegidius Plüss


Association for the promotion of computer science education

Förderungsprojekt Nr. 2015-025 der Schweizerischen Akademie der Technischen Wissenschaften an die Schweizer Informatikgesellschaft


To the extent possible under law, TJ Group has waived all copyright and related or neighboring rights to TigerJython.