Write The Docs EU — Robert Lehmann — Self-Directed Learning Material

I’m at Write The Docs EU today in Budapest and will post semi–unpolished notes from sessions throughout the day after each talk finishes.

Don’t teach dogmatically.

Collaboration can kill cohesion, so choose one champion for the discussion.

Use the right tools and lightweight markup; they use Jekyll and Sphinx.

Begin with the end in mind. For example, when you start to explain a process, if you mention a few things that haven’t been covered before, backtrack and write that information in a new (earlier) chapter.

Encourage experiments so people can appreciate going through the exercise and learning from it. On a related note, “no pain, no gain”.

Being redundant is good, but being concise is better. Find balance between the two.

Translate verbatim and sheepishly. If you spot anything wrong, update the original source first.

How do they teach?

  • Teachers need to remember that “their keyboard is made of lava”. Instruct the students to do it.
  • Use the Socratic method. Don’t give answers. e.g. “Good question! What could you do?”
  • “Feedback is the breakfast of champions.”

For more information, see Coaching Guidelines.

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Bryan Villarin

Bryan is a Happiness Engineer at Automattic. He's also a photographer, card magician, and cat whisperer. (Thanks to my friend and colleague Steve Blythe for the sweet photo!)

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