In Starting Out with App Inventor for Android, Tony Gaddis and Rebecca Halsey teach the fundamentals of programming while simultaneously showing students how to create fun, useful, and imaginative apps. Because App Inventor allows students to create apps and see them running on a phone, programming becomes a personally meaningful skill.
Gaddis’s highly accessible, step-by-step presentation presents all the details needed to understand the “how” and the “why”–but never loses sight of the fact that most novice programmers struggle with this material. His gradual approach ensures that readers understand the logic behind developing high-quality programs.
Teaching and Learning Experience
This program presents a better teaching and learning experience–for you and your students. It will help:
- Engage Students with Dynamic Mobile Apps: Students not only learn how to create their own apps, they can actually see them run on their phone or the Android emulator.
- Enhance Learning with the Gaddis Approach: Gaddis’s accessible approach features clear and easy-to-read code listings, concise real-world examples, and exercises in every chapter.
- Motivate Learning: When students learn they can easily create their own mobile apps, they become motivated to learn programming–whether that is in the CSO or CS1 course.
- Integrate App Inventor in the Classroom: App Inventor can be used in a variety of ways in the classroom, and this text is designed to accommodate all of them.
Engage Students with Dynamic Mobile Apps
Because App Inventor allows students to create apps and see them running on a phone, programming becomes a personally meaningful skill.
- App Inventor allows students with no prior programming experience to make their own Android apps. It is extremely easy to use, and it combines a visual GUI designer with a drag-and-drop code editor.
- As they create their apps, students can see their apps run an on-screen Android emulator, or an actual Android phone that is connected to the computer.
Enhance Learning with the Gaddis Approach
Gaddis’s highly accessible, step-by-step presentation presents all the details needed to understand the “how” and the “why”—but never loses sight of the fact that most novice programmers struggle with this material.
- Concept Statements start each major section of the text. This statement concisely summarizes the main point of the section.
- Example Apps are designed to highlight the topic currently being studied.
- Hands-on tutorials lead the student through the process of developing or completing an app. These tutorials give the student experience performing the tasks discussed in the chapters.
- VideoNotes developed specifically for this book are available at www.pearsonhighered.com/gaddis. Icons appear throughout the text alerting the student to videos about specific topics. Students can follow along with the authors as they work through each tutorial in the videos. Also, one programming project at the end of each chapter has an accompanying VideoNote that shows the student how to create the solution.
- Notes explain interesting or often misunderstood points relevant to the topic at hand.
- Tips advise students on the best techniques forapproaching different programming or animation problems.
- Checkpoints at key locations in each chapter check students’ understanding of important lessons.
- Each chapter presents a thorough set of multiple choice and short answer Review Questions.
- Exercises for developing apps are included in each chapter. The exercises are designed to solidify the student's knowledge of the topics presented in the chapter.
Even though students regularly download, install, and use apps on their phones, they do not usually think of their phones as computers. When students learn that they can easily create their own mobile apps, especially apps that take advantage of a phone's unique capabilities (such as text messaging or location sensing), they become excited and motivated to learn.
- The Gaddis style, supported by App Inventor’s easy-to-use interface, eases students into the fundamentals of programming and helps them recognize and avoid errors as they develop their skills.
- For many beginning students, learning the syntax of a programming language can be a daunting task. Because syntax is not an issue in App Inventor, the student devotes his or her time to developing and debugging algorithms.
Integrate App Inventor in the Classroom
App Inventor can be used in a variety of ways in the classroom, and this text is designed to accommodate all of them. Here are some examples:
- You can use this text with App Inventor for the first part of an introductory programming course, and then switch to a traditional programming language. Depending on the amount of time you want to devote to App Inventor, you can use the entire book, or you can omit some of the latter chapters.
- You can use this text with App Inventor for a brief introduction to programming in a computer concepts or an introduction to technology course. The latter chapters can be omitted to fit the amount of time that you have.
- You can use this text by itself in a semester long course that uses only App Inventor to teach programming fundamentals.
- You can use this text in short courses or summer programs that use App Inventor to teach programming.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Introduction to Mobile Development with App Inventor
Chapter 2: Working With Media
Chapter 3: Input, Variables, and Calculations
Chapter 4: Decision Blocks and More Components
Chapter 5: Repetition Blocks
Chapter 6: Procedures and Functions
Chapter 7: Lists
Chapter 8: Using TinyDB to Save Data
Chapter 9: Graphics and Animation
Chapter 10: Working with Text
Chapter 11: Text Messaging
Chapter 12: Sensors
Chapter 13: Other App Inventor Capabilities
Appendix A: Setting Up App Inventor
Appendix B: Connecting an Android Device to App Inventor
Appendix C: Uploading Your Apps to the Google Play Store and the App Inventor Gallery
Appendix D: Component Quick Reference
Appendix E: Answers to Checkpoints