Path for Self Education

When I submitted my application for Ada, I received a confirmation email which included some resources to practice with while I waited to hear if I got an interview. After learning that I did not proceed to the second round, I researched other boot camp programs and what their “pre-requisites” or suggested pre-work/self-education would be. The following is the list that I compiled for my self study path for whatever program I end up in.

  • Command Line/Terminal/Unix/Linux ( Introduction to the Mac OS X Command Line – Treehouse, Ryan’s Linux Tutorial, Windows Shell – Learn Ruby the Hard Way, Console Foundations – Treehouse, Git Bash – Udacity [Getting to Know the Command Line, UNIX Introduction, Linus, Survival])
  • HTML (General Assembly – Dash, Codecademy – HTML & CSS)
  • Git and Git Hub (*How to use Git & GitHub – Udacity, Try Git – Code School)
  • Ruby (Try Ruby, Learn Ruby The Hard Way, Codecademy)
  • Ruby on Rails (Treehouse – Build a Simple RoR App, Code School – Getting Started with Ruby on Rails, Codecademy – Make a Rails App)
  • Javascript (Codecademy)

The items in red above are the ones that I’ve completed so far, in blue are the ones I’ve almost finished.
* I did the first of 3 parts of this course prior to getting accepted to Code Fellows, and then stopped to do the pre-work for boot camp. I did start back up again, but because of the convoluted instruction style, I didn’t really remember some of the details I needed to answer the questions. I also didn’t really enjoy this one, especially after doing another one that must have been some sort of pre-work for CF, although now I can’t find the info that directed me to it, D’OH. LSS – I didn’t finish this one.

I am halfway through Learn Ruby the Hard Way, which says it can take up to 6 months to complete – I’ve been at it about a month so far. I ended up pretty much finishing this. There were some things that I couldn’t get to work, most likely because I was having Gem issues. I should have gone back after I figured that out, but then I ended up deciding that Ada and Ruby may not be the right things for me. Perhaps I’ll go back to it one day.

Once I’ve finished the rest of LRtHW, I’ll probably switch back to HTML & CSS on Codecademy, then maybe to How to Use Git and Git Hub, then Ruby on Codecademy. We’ll see how long all that takes me. AS noted above, I never finished the Git&GitHub course. HTML & CSS at Codecademy is pre-work for CF, so I did do that. Did not do the Ruby tutorial.
Assuming I still have time, The other Git tutorial next, and then the Build a Pro Website on Codecademy, and then on to RoR. I don’t think I ended up doing any of these things. Maybe someday.
If I could get through all the RoR lessons, Javascript on Codecademy. JavaScript at Codecademy was another pre-req for CF, so I did do that.

**In my spare time, (In the evenings, when it’s kind of distracting around here), I’ve been working my way through The Odin Project, as well. I’m not really sure what I expect out of it, but so far, it’s a lot lighter than some of the other stuff (Okay, not really, Try Ruby was super light, and I did all the Dash Projects in the evenings on the couch in front of the tv, too.)

That’s a lot for 5-6 months, but I’ve set myself on a daily schedule, as it is quite difficult to really get down to business on my own, outside of the classroom environment. I laid out the schedule a couple of weeks ago, and meant to implement it the first week of April, but so far, results have been sporadic. Hopefully, getting some things down here in blog form will help my motivation.

Daily Schedule:

MON/TUES/FRI (non-work days)
4-6 am: coffee/wake-up! etc.
7-8: shower/breakfast/feed dogs
8-10:15: Tutorials/lessons/education
10:15-10:45: break/snack
10:45-12:30: Tutorials/lessons/education
12:30-1 pm: Lunch
1-4: Tutorials/lessons/education
4-8: Dinner/clean/etc.
8: Bed
9: Sleep

WED/THURS/SAT (work days)
4-6 am: coffee/wake-up! etc.
7-8: shower/breakfast/feed dogs
8-9: Read articles/info/tweet/etc.
9-9:30: walk to work
10 am – 3/4 pm: work
ALT: Tutorials/lessons/education (for days when I don’t have appointments scheduled, or not a full day)
3/4:30: walk home
4/5 – 8: Dinner/Clean/etc.
8: Bed
9: Sleep

This allows for 7 hours of self-education 3 times per week, for a total of 21 hours, minimum. 7 hours of sleep per night. Hopefully, a good work/life/education balance.
The off-work days are as similar to what I think a code school/boot camp as seems practical for now.
Obviously, Sunday is a free-for-all, which probably really means more cleaning, yard work, etc. as opposed to fun stuff.

In addition to the tutorials, I have several other events mapped out to possibly attend.
3/18 – GA Dash Night – this one was a bit weird for me, as I did not realize ahead of time that it was an opportunity to work on the DASH projects in a group and have questions regarding those projects answered. I had already completed all the projects (in something like two weeks! which seemed to be an anomaly), so I spent some time tracking down the last few skills in the projects that somehow didn’t get marked as complete and completed them, so I got something out of it, but it was bit weird being the only one who’d completed them all. Also, when I asked about tracking down those skills in the slides, I’m not sure the person who assisted me understood what I was looking for, and I ended up answering all of my own questions.

4/14 – Hack the People Mentor night (I just checked the time on this, and no longer see it on the Meetup calendar, so just sent a message to the organizer to see if it’s still happening. If not, there is another scheduled in May that looks the same.)

4/23 – Code Fellows Info Session
Meet instructors, see the space, speak with grads, ask questions.
I think I read that Code Fellows also has Office Hours on Thursdays from noon-1 pm, during which you can just drop by and tour and ask questions, so I imagine I’ll do that at some point.
Attending the info session made me want to attend Code Fellows. It felt like the right place to be, and I’m excited to be starting the Computer Science and Web Development Boot Camp on 8/3/15.

4/30 – General Assembly – Coding for Beginners HTML and CSS
$35, 6-9 pm, WeWork, Sublime Text
Did not end up doing this as I was in NYC.

5/12 – Hack the People Mentor night
6:30 pm Jolt Labs
Also did not do this – I was feeling ill at the last moment, and it seemed like a bad idea to be on the bus for an hour, etc.

5/16 Act-W Conference – this seems like a great event that includes networking, speakers, skill building, etc. and I would REALLY like to go. However, it is on a Saturday, which is a workday for me, and is also the weekend before Memorial Day weekend, which I am already taking off to attend Sasquatch (pre-planned before I even applied to Ada, much less embarked on any of the rest of this.)
I went to this anyway! And it was great. I did not end up going to a lot of the things I intended to, as I made a friend 1st thing, and we stuck together all day. Compromise! However, the salary negotiation talk we jointly chose was great.

5/28 General Assembly – Dine & Dash: Intro to Front-End Web Development
RSVP’d @WeWork 6:30-8pm
Casual, self-paced Dash class, learn more about 10-week Front End Web Development course.
Did not go to this either, I believe because I’d decided to apply to Code Fellows by then, and had narrowed my focus.

I’m also following several of GA’s one-off classes that I’ve either missed or not ready to take yet.


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