I have been teaching an Internet of Things (IoT) course for quite some time now... going on 5 years. First it was taught as a special topics course spawned from the student group CNM HackerSpace of which I am the Faculty Mentor. I based the class on the Picademy Training that the Raspberry Pi Foundation developed to teach instructors/teachers how to teach with the Raspberry Pi. The class was popular and typically filled up within weeks of being opened for enrollment. Over time I worked to convince my peers of the value proposition of incorporating and IoT class into our CIS programs and 3 years ago we added the course to 3 of our CIS programs.
Why add an IoT class to a Systems Administration or Networking Program you ask? Well, we added the course because of all the critical "soft" skills and valuable technical skills that are transferrable to other courses that had become an integral part of the course. Not for the cool, fun, and engaging projects... which are also part of the course. This course includes partner projects, sharing, presentations, and troubleshooting galore which tend to be missing in other courses based on online curriculum. Plus we expose our students to programming, physical computing, and system administration tasks that are helpful in building a successful IT Technician.
For this post I would like to look at the System Administration specific objectives that I re-wrote earlier this year.
Here are the objectives. We will be focusing on Objective #1.
By the end of this course, the students will be able to:
I further broke this down into the following sub-objectives.
1.1 – Use Serial communications between computing devices to communicate with and Arduino Microcontroller using the Arduino IDE. (AP)
1.2 – Use physical computing connections to create a sensor/actuator system that functions properly following the Sparkfun tutorials (AP)
1.3 – Recognize and reproduce the process of installing an OS onto a Micro SD card that can boot using a Raspberry Pi (K) (AP)
1.4 -- Practice manipulating the Graphical User Interface (GUI) of a Linux OS with a predefined list of objectives with 100% accuracy. (AP)
1.5 – Using the command line, demonstrate the procedure to update the Raspberry Pi OS on your primary Micro SD Card at least once. (AP)
1.6 – Practice and demonstrate using SSH and VNC to remotely connect over a local area network to a Raspberry Pi OS successfully in the classroom environment and/or home environment. (AP)
1.7 - Recognize and use various Linux terminal commands to navigate the OS from the terminal using provided instructions. (K) (AP)
1.8 - Working with a classmate complete a project and share the results with the class (S)
1.9 – Construct a functional IoT project, with a classmate, in 3 days. (AP)
In these objectives I hope to highlight common System Administration tasks, like physically connecting devices properly, installing operating systems, manipulating operating systems both graphically and at the CLI, remote connectivity (and the networking knowledge needed to pull it off) for administration purposes, and finally working with teammate, working against deadlines, and presenting you results or ideas to a audience.
So, What do you think? Can I change any of these to make them better? Do I need to add, or subtract anything? Let me know what you think by posting in the comments.
Next up we will look at the assignments/projects that I use to target these objectives. Talk to you tomorrow...
Remote Connectivity and Management
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Picture by Miiicihiaieil Hieinizilieir / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0
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