Pennsylvania Homeschoolers

AP* Online Classes

My favorite assignment was constructing a brain website to aid myself and the other students in reviewing this part of the body. This course definitely enhanced my interest in the subject particularly because Mrs. G's love for psychology was so apparent and consequently contagious!

AP Class Reviews

AP Computer Science Principles taught by Rebekah Lang

by Students and Parents

A Phenomenal Class posted by Sophie on August 13 2019 at 18:53:27

AP Computer Science Principles from Ms. Lang was hands down one of my favorite courses I've ever taken. This course prepared me exceptionally well for the AP exam. Throughout the year, we mainly focused on extensive code.org work to build up our foundation in CS, and then the discussion posts (focused on readings from Blown to Bits) helped you think about what you're learning and solidify it; I especially loved how it helped us understand how what we are learning applies to everyday life. We also did group projects which included aspects of the Create PT responses and did research projects which prepared us for the Explore PT. When the AP test date was approaching, we had enough time to focus on our Explore/Create PTs thoroughly, and Ms. Lang provided an extensive amount of resources/tests that significantly helped me score a 5 on the exam. Though, I have to mention that the addition of the interactive live meetings was one of my favorite parts of the class--we both interacted with our peers and learned the material through games/quizzes, activities, and lectures. The meetings were also recorded for people who couldn't attend. 

 

The amount of work you put in varies. On a regular week, I'd personally put in about 4 hours of work; however, they're many times where we have larger projects, and on those weeks I'd put in somewhere between 8-12 hours. I felt that every assignment was necessary to understand the subject further. In the beginning, I felt as if some of the work was slightly redundant, though as the course progressed, I realized that each assignment was explicitly chosen and enhanced my interest in what we were learning and the subject as a whole--I really appreciated that. 

 

One of the highlights of this course was the awesome peer community that was built. A student made a hangouts group chat, and that was very helpful: we asked and answered questions, studied for tests, helped debug code, and much more. And as I've said before, we also interacted with each other via the live meetings. However, the biggest highlight of AP CSP was having a fantastic teacher. Ms. Lang seemed to care about each student and wanted them to do well. She, of course, thought the subject very well, but she also was very responsive in answering any question you had. For example, I had a problem with registering for College Board (for the digital portfolio), and Ms. Lang communicated with me to make sure that the problem was solved. 

 

I came into this class with a little background in Python; however, it doesn't matter whether you have experience or no experience with coding. This class does a great job teaching the subject and preparing you for the AP test, so whether your goal is to spark an interest in CS, or just to get a good score on the AP exam, this class will fit your every need. The only thing you need for this class is a good mindset, and a willingness to work hard. 

 

Thank you, Ms. Lang, for a great year! 


Good class with a great teacher! posted by Dawn on May 23 2019 at 24:36:07

Yes! I felt very ready. Although I decided not to take the exam, I was very confident about how I would have done on it for both the create and explore PTs and the multiple choice!

I usually put in an hour or two a day, for a solid total of 5-10 hours a week. The very lightest weeks I dipped as low as two; the very highest were closer to 15.

I really loved using the book Blown To Bits - I learned so much from that text, and even though I grumbled and groaned about the discussion questions over it, they were really valuable to me! In addition the practical applications were great. There were two main coding units in the class, one in the mid-fall and one in the spring, and getting to use the principles we had learned all year was really great and helped cement a lot of concepts for me.

Yes, absolutely! Although I liked computers and computer things before I took this course, I've now decided to major in computer science this fall and pursue it as a career (in fact, this summer I'm doing an internship with a software company!). I had a great time in Mrs Lang's AP CSP class!

Sometimes. I came into the class with a pretty solid background in Javascript, so honestly most of the time in my study group I was helping answer other students' questions rather than the other way around - however, having those questions asked and those bugs in people's programs to find and solve was really great for me too and gave me a lot of extra chances to learn and apply what I had learned!!

 Yes, I would definitely recommend this course. Although it is pretty code.org-heavy, there were so many discussions and practice scorings and so forth that I'm glad I took the class. Also, having Mrs Lang there was GREAT! She's a super helpful teacher and was really good about answering my questions and helping me clear up things I was confused about both by email (she almost always responded really fast) and in the weekly live chats.



Excellent course! posted by Alaina on May 14 2019 at 20:42:18

I did not take the AP exam, but this course prepared me extremely well to take the test if I had decided to. Many review materials were provided for the multiple choice exam, and we were given detailed instructions on how to complete the portfolio successfully. (Completing the portfolio was required even for those not taking the exam, serving as a valuable learning experience as well as a method of testing.)



I usually put about 5 hours of work a week into the course, but I had a fair amount of experience with computers and coding before the course. I also tend to code quickly. 10 hours might be more accurate for someone who was not as familiar with computers before starting the course. During weeks with a lot of coding or work on the portfolio, expect to put in 10 or more hours.

 

My favorite assignment was the Create PT task for the portfolio. Each student got the opportunity to use what they had learned in the class to make an app of their own which they would submit as part of their exam if they were taking the exam. Another favorite assignment of mine was reading Blown To Bits, an online book which we read parts of for the class. I also enjoyed the coding lessons which we did through Code.org.



The course enhanced my interest in the subject. I was already planning to pursue a career in computers at the start of the year, but this course helped me to appreciate different fields that I had not thought about as much previously. We learned a wide range of different coding and computer skills, which gave me a glimpse into different possible careers and a better grasp of computers as a whole.

 

There were several discussion boards and group activities throughout the year, which I enjoyed. The teacher did an exceptional job of managing groups so that work was fairly distributed and there were no “coasting” team members.

 

I think most students who are willing to work hard would do well in this course. I recommend this course to everyone, even those who might not consider computers their favorite things--this course makes computers fun and simple, and a working knowledge of computers is an asset in almost any job or career. I also recommend the course to students who already know a great deal about computers--if nothing else, it is a good review to solidify concepts you already understand and will prepare you to get a 5 on the exam.


The workload and time required to succeed will be vastly different between someone who does not know much about computers and someone who already knows a good amount, but I believe that any hardworking and dedicated student would be capable of succeeding in this class.


Great Course! posted by Mary on May 13 2019 at 16:13:52

I had a blast in AP CS P with Mrs. Lang. She made the course enjoyable and prepared us well for the exam. The work load was pretty light for me but the homework was always a joy to complete (maybe because I enjoy coding). This is a great intro course for those who might be interested in computer science or just want to try it out. 


An amazing course! posted by Jessica on May 12 2019 at 10:21:30

First of all, this course was absolutely amazing. I loved interacting with my classmates, and Mrs. Lang is a phenomenal teacher! It was a lot of fun, but I also learned a lot. I think the curriculum definitely prepared us well for the exam, since we learned everything in a methodical way and thoroughly covered all the topics on the exam. Mrs. Lang also supplied us with a ton of resources for studying, and by the end of it, I felt well-prepared. I would definitely recommend this course to motivated and hardworking students who wish to further their knowledge. Thank you Mrs. Lang for an amazing year!


Amazing CSP class!!! posted by AnaXue M on May 11 2019 at 16:30:56

Absolutely! Mrs. Lang provided LOTS of review material and sources that sudents can use. During our live lectures, we also played some games as review tools. Of course, you can't rely on just those sources to feel prepared. You also need to study on your own but if I had any questions while studying, Mrs. Lang was very quick to respond!

Hmm, about 1-4 hours? If we had projects it was on the longer side. 

Probably the coding projects. For those, we would treat them as if they were the Create tasks and so we would practice writing the written responses.

Yes. Before the year started, I didn't know much about coding. Now that the year is over, I know so much more and find it super interesting.

Yes. We were in a chat where we could ask questions or communicate with group members if we were working on a group project. 

Anyone who is willing to put the work into this class. If you have a big interest or small interest in this class, are willing to work hard, and get somehting out of it, this class would be awesome. 


AP CSP Class Review Form posted by Austin on May 07 2019 at 16:14:25


Excellent Class and an Excellent Teacher! posted by Zachary Beddingfield on May 07 2019 at 16:10:50

I really enjoyed taking this class this year! The workload was super easy for me, and I could generally complete all assignments for a week within 4-8 hours. At the same time, I felt completely prepared for the AP exam and after taking practice exams nothing really came up that I hadn't already been taught! Furthermore, the teacher is super nice, and when there was a problem with my school and registering me for the AP exam, she stayed in constant contact with me for almost a week, contacting both the College Board and school on my behalf, and solved the problem for me!


Excellent Class and an Excellent Teacher! posted by Zachary Beddingfield on May 07 2019 at 16:07:40


AP Computer Science Principles posted by Chloe O on July 19 2018 at 19:40:21

I feel that this course prepared me very well for the AP exam. The assignments were great practice for the Create and Explore PT portions of the exam, and we learned everything we needed to know for the multiple choice exam as well. The study guide and practice tests that Ms. Lang gave us were also very helpful in preparing for the exam.

The hours of work per week varied a lot depending on the assignments for the week. I spent anywhere from 5-15 hours/week on this class. The Explore and Create PT assignments required the most amount of work, but Ms. Lang scheduled plenty of time for us to finish these assignments and submit them to the College Board. Goal planning and timeline development were important assignments that Ms.Lang built into the schedule.

My favorite assignments were the coding ones. I enjoyed the hands-on aspect of those assignments.

The course sparked my interest in coding and I am planning to explore it further.

I have done many online classes and they always have a discussion/interaction aspect. Sometimes these feel like busy work, but Ms. Lang created useful and interactive communication assignments. I enjoyed working with other students doing group coding projects. Ms. Lang created discussion boards where we could put links to the projects we were working on to get feedback from others. I found this feedback very helpful. 

Anyone who is willing to work hard and put in the time would do well in this course. Although there were math and problem solving skills used during this course, it didn't require prior computer science experience. I would definitely recommend this course. Ms. Lang is one of the best online teachers that I have had.


AP CSP Class Review posted by Sarah Che (Parent of Rebekah Che) on July 11 2018 at 18:18:45

Mrs. Lang did a wonderful job with her inaugural class. She is one of the first teachers teaching this newly launched AP course nationwide. Without much outside resources nor any help from older siblings, my daughter was able to follow along and even excel with Mrs. Lang's guidance. We are very pleased with the learning that took place during the school year and the final AP score. Thank you!


Review, AP CS Principles, Rebekka Lang posted by Christine C Solomon on June 24 2018 at 09:23:29

Ms. Lang was an excellent teacher who was very responsive to any questions or concerns of my student. I highly recommend her as a teacher. I feel confident that any course she teaches will be very well done: she is knowledgeable about the subject mattter, responsive to the students, and genuinely want the student to learn the material and do well in both the class and on the AP class. Whatever the scale for ranking, I would give Ms. Lang the highest number of stars! Thank you for offering the calibre of teacher for which Ms. Lang is an terrific example. 

 

Sincerely, Christine Solomon for student Michael Solomon, 9th grader at time of the class


AP CSP 2017-18 Review posted by Rebekah Che on June 23 2018 at 01:00:16

Generally, yes. I have to say, a week before the AP exam or so, I was rather overwhelemed and didn't feel ready at all - there were just so many great review materials out there and I wasn't sure where to start or end! But by the time the exam rolled around, I had gone through Ms. Lang's list of review materials and was feeling relatively confident.

On average, I would say maybe around 8 hours per week? The workload varied, though.

Definitely the two portfolio tasks, Explore and Create! The Explore PT was a great learning experience, and helped hone not only my knowledge of computer innovations but also researching/writing skills. I struggled a lot with the Create because of a few coding disasters, but I learned a lot from the mistakes I made and it was so fun to be able to develop an app I could call my very own.

Most definitely yes. Prior to taking the course, I knew little about computer science; all I knew was a little bit of coding and I really wasn't motivated to do anything with that knowledge. However, taking this course reignited my interest in computer science and made it into something completely new and wonderful.

Actually, the communications with other students were probably my favorite thing about this course! Ms. Lang provided a lot of opportunities for peer interaction and collaboration, and although I admit I was somewhat shy around my classmates at first, I soon found these communications to be insanely valuable and engaging.

I think literally any student who's willing to work hard could do well in this course. Although it does involve a lot of problem solving and reasoning, it's nothing that students can't learn to do. I was very skeptical of CSP at first, as I didn't think I had any hopes of doing well among all my genius classmates ;) but my mindset has changed since then. Ms. Lang was very supportive and quick to reply to any questions/concerns I would message her with; sometimes she'd reply within minutes, which I really appreciated.

This course was one of the most enjoyable ones I've ever taken, and I would totally recommend it to other students!


AP CSP 2017-18 posted by Nicole Kraker on June 22 2018 at 20:29:29

Nerves aside, I felt VERY prepared for the exam! 

The time I spent in a week varied... I spent 5 hours some weeks and (one week) a good deal more than 30 in others... 

I loved everything that I could put an artistic spin on, like the favicon and our group coding project.

I loved having all the material given to me instead of having to find it on my own...

Our communication as a class was interesting. I enjoyed getting to see what others thought.

Any dedicated student can do well in this course! I'm totally going to recommend it to others and look forward to doing more with my knowledge.


AP Computer Science Principles Review posted by Caroline Larsen on June 22 2018 at 17:45:13

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?: Yes, it prepared me well. Throughout the year, we covered the requirements for the performance tasks (done within class as part of the AP score) and reinforced the concepts we learned in tests and quizzes, so I felt confident both when we did the PTs and during the multiple choice exam.

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?: I generally put in four to seven hours per week, depending on the workload.

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?: I found the coding projects we did on Code.org valuable, because they helped me understand the concepts better and get practice with programming. The practice tests we took were also very helpful.

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?: The course enhanced my interest in many computing concepts, including representation of data, how the Internet works, and file compression techniques.

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?: I didn't communicate a whole lot with other students, but many of the conversations in the discussion forums were valuable because they helped me understand assigments better and learn additional information about computing.

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?: Students who enjoy interactive activities and are willing to put in the  time for various small projects (and a few larger ones) would do well in this course. I recommend it to anyone who wants to learn programming and gain a solid foundation in computer science.


Review for Rebekah Lang's Computer Science Principles Class posted by George Nielsen on June 22 2018 at 13:55:56

I recently completed Rebekah Lang's Computer Science Principles Class with PA Homeschoolers, and it was one of the biggest highlights of my school year.

Not only did this class prepare me well for the AP Exam, as well as the Performance Tasks, but I also feel that it gave me a much better understanding of the internet, computers, and many other things, as well as many of their uses.

The work load for this class is not extremely intense, but it definitely requires you to put in a fair amount of work every week, with occasional projects and quizzes that add more to some weeks.

These quizzes and projects helped immensely in learning all of the material and, as some of the projects were group projects, teamwork and collaboration skills. They helped to reinforce many of the concepts that we had learned over the past few weeks, and helped creating in learning, and remembering, all of the material.

This class also helped to give me a much better understanding of computer's, computer related technologies, and the internet, as well as many of their uses, and benefits, as well as the risks and concerns, and I feel that this has helped me to become a better user of these technologies, and a better citizen of the time we live in.

On a final note, I would like to say how much I enjoyed Mrs. Lang as a teacher, and all of the helpful advise and feedback she would give on homework, quizzes, projects, and any concerns I might send to her. She really helped me get through the class, and learn the material, and as this was my first AP, that really helped.

I would recommend this class to anyone, no matter what they are interested in, as I fell it has helped me to learn more about the world we live in.



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