# 3.10 What is an abstraction? (rectangle around student created abstraction)

#1

This is my first year teaching AP CSP. I am struggling with the definition of a student-generated abstraction. Can someone help explain it?
Also, it must contain mathematical and logical concepts. Can some explain this and give me an example?

#2

The easiest student generated abstraction is a function or a method that is created by the student. For example, here are two functions that calculate area of a rectangle and surface area of a rectangular prism:

The surfaceArea function calls or uses the rectangleArea function. Both functions have Math concepts in them. If you would like to include logic, you could add an if-else block in your function like this one:

Other student generated abstraction could be a list. Let me know if you need more help with this.

#3

Oh my gracious! I have no idea how to do what you have written above. I am new to AP CSP and I am teaching myself how to do this. I am staying about a week ahead of the kids. We are on Unit 3 Lesson 10 - Design A Scene. We/they havenâ€™t learned anything you listed above except for how to define and call a function. I have absolutely NO idea how to do any of that. Is this something they learn in Unit 5?

#4

Sorry, I did not mean to scare you. By the time you get through unit 5, this will all look familiar. In Unit 3 the drawSeaStar, drawSeaGrass etc functions that students made would be considered student generated abstractions. At this stage when students use the random number generator for position and color that could be considered a Math concept. However, I discourage students to use random numbers on the create PT as examples of a Math concept. By the end of the year, students will learn conditionals and how to write Math equations which is what they should use on the Create PT.

#5

Whew! I feel better. I panicked! Thank you so much for your reply.