I love to learn from other developers and share my knowledge. At work recently I needed to explain the Laravel 4 workflow. There are a variety of ways to go about this, and I thought about the pros and cons:
- Read and summarize the documentation - it may be thorough but it only has small snippets of example code without context. This can be hard to relate to practical application and hard to remember.
- Set up a presentation with embedded example code - I've seen this at various conferences. It works great when you don't have much time. It still lacks a degree of greater context, though.
- Work through some random example code, referring to the documentation - This will almost certainly be a jumbled mess that will only confuse the student.
- Build an example application on the fly with a presentation as a guide - This will definitely take longer and have the usual bugs in live code. But it allows you to see practical application and context. The concepts covered can be listed in the presentation. When you have the time, this covers it all. This is the same reason I prefer video tutorials, except in live presentations you can ask questions!
The result is two presentations and an example application:
The first presentation covers most of the key subjects in the documentation by creating the Example Blog. It was a hit, so I was asked to make a second presentation to cover the missing topics from the first. Both presentations add code to the Example Blog. For a more robust example application including full CRUD, authentication, continuous integration, asset compilation, and more, check out my complete example application Bookymark.
I've also done a similar live code example for CodeIgniter at the Orlando PHP meetup group. Here are the resources for that:
Hopefully this helps improve your Laravel-fu, CodeIgniter-fu, and group teaching-fu like it did for me.