Computer Science Education Week
December is a month of holidays, and Computer Science Education Week is one of our favorites! CSEdWeek runs from December 4–10 this year, inspiring K–12 students to learn computer science, advocating for equity in the field, and celebrating the contributions of students, teachers, and many of our ITEST partners.
This year’s CSEdWeek theme is “Impacts of Computing,” and that means all impacts—in education, privacy, security, and accessibility. There’s a lot for students to think about as they begin to understand the ethical, social, economic, and even the environmental effects of computer science, whether intended or not. Since computing is a critical skill for the future's evolving workforce, STELAR has included many computer science-based skillsets in their publication, K-8 STEM Career Competencies: Developing Foundational Skills for the Future of Work. You can view the full report here and read further for information on how ITEST is preparing the next generation for the future of work.
So, thank you, computer science teachers and role models everywhere! Join us in celebrating CSEdWeek by checking out some of the computer science resources highlighted below.
Teaching Coding in Grades 5-8 with Scratch Encore
Overview: This course prepares learners to teach coding in grades 5-8 with the Scratch Encore curriculum and was designed to be completed over the course of 6 weeks. Each week learners are introduced to a new computer science concept and the Scratch Encore module that teaches that concept. Many coding and debugging scaffolds that have been used and refined in classrooms are introduced.
ESTRELLA Expand Latinx Learners’ Authentic Experiences in Computer Programming
The curriculum was designed for and renovated through the participation and feedback of middle school students. It integrates basics of Computer Programming and Mathematics concepts and activities needed to represent digital video and color images. It draws on the almost natural motivation of users, middle school students, with digital image and video.
E-textile Survey Instrument
E-textile Survey Instrument, developed for Exploring Computer Science E-textiles Unit.
Stitching the Loop: An Electronic Textiles Unit in Exploring Computer Science is a curriculum unit for students to explore electronic textiles (e-textiles): articles of clothing, accessories, or home furnishings with embedded electronic and computational elements. After conducting various studies on curriculum design, teaching strategies, student learning, and portfolio designs, this unit is ready for download and classroom implementation by ECS teachers.
Using Informed Design in Informal Computer Science Programs to Increase Youths’ Interest, Self-efficacy, and Perceptions of Parental Support
Our work is situated in research on Computer Science (CS) learning in informal learning environments and literature on the factors that influence girls to enter CS. In this article, we outline design choices around the creation of a summer programming camp for middle school youth. In addition, we describe a near-peer mentoring model we used that was influenced by Bandura's self-efficacy theory.
The Effects of Providing Starter Projects in Open-Ended Scratch Activities
Given the importance of broadening participation in the field of computing, goals of supporting personal expression and developing a sense of belonging must live alongside the goals of conceptual knowledge and developing disciplinary expertise. Integrating opportunities for students to be creative in how they enact computing ideas plays an important role when designing curricula. We examine how student creativity, as expressed through theme and the use of costumes, backdrops, and narrative in Scratch projects, is affected by using a themed starter project.
STELAR Webinar: K-8 STEM Career Competencies: Developing Foundational Skills for the Future of Work
On June 28, STELAR hosted authors Jessica Juliuson, Joyce Malyn-Smith, Sarah MacGillvray, and Clara McCurdy-Kirlis as they presented an overview of the competencies for their publication K-8 STEM Career Competencies: Developing Foundational Skills for the Future of Work.