'15-'16 HTTP and Abstraction on the Internet


Use this thread to discuss your questions and comments about how to run the lesson.


I have a few questions before I teach this lesson:

  1. Should I see the HTTP version anywhere - because I don’t think I am seeing it now…
  2. Where would I see the “body” of the message?
  3. Should I/students be clicking on the “path” or “initator” to find some of this information?
  4. What does “initiator” mean?

I also included a document of what I am seeing and want to make sure I am interpreting what the “response” vs. “requests” correctly.


Hey Katie,

Great questions!

  1. I wouldn’t worry about identifying the HTTP version. If it easy to find it might be interesting to point out that protocols get updated but it’s certainly not a key component of the lesson.
  2. I would keep the focus on the header information you highlighted, since those are the components of the protocol that students will have the most experience with. I think this is browser-specific but I’ve found in some instances you can “right-click” on messages to see more detailed contents.
    3/4. No need to worry about path / initiator.

As far as identifying the components of the request vs. response the only distinction I would make is that the request includes a method (usually GET or POST) and the response includes a status (usually 200 OK). The rest of the information provided is still really interesting and you should explore it, but I wouldn’t worry about linking it to any one portion of the HTTP protocol.

In short, don’t worry about identifying most of the details of HTTP. Focus on the fact that HTTP is built upon other protocols they have studied (another example of abstraction) and is used every time students access information on the Internet. Hopefully Developer Tools is a fun way to explore these ideas and “makes real” what the browser is actually doing when you use the Internet.

Hope that helps!



I did the lesson today and students seemed to enjoy looking under the hood of what is going on. I think I need to do a better job of setting up an “Ah-ha” moment for students at the end of the lesson - we talked a bit about abstraction but I don’t think I did a good job of linking it all together.

Also, I combined this lesson with lesson 13 since they both seemed a little shorter (students are doing the performance task while I am gone tomorrow and the next day). Just a heads up that both days 11 and 13 are shorter so you could use some of that time to start or finish the performance task.

In general, I feel like this unit has had shorter lessons which makes me think the unit could be shortened a bit overall or a documentary/short TED talk about the internet could be added to the unit to bring together the ideas in the unit. NPR has a “TED radio hour” show called “The End of Privacy” that I am thinking of including at some point this unit.


The method wasn’t showing the first time I used the tool. After clicking around, I right-clicked on the header bar to turn on the method. I will have students turn off some of the other columns.



Thanks! Not seeing method was my issue too. Thanks for the hint!


6 posts were merged into an existing topic: '16-'17 General Discussion for Lesson 1.13