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Steve Kelly

What would an exceptional middle and high school computer science curriculum include? - Quora - 48 views

  • What would an exceptional middle and high school computer science curriculum include?
  • This isn't a complete answer, but one thing the very first introductory classes should require is that the students turn off all their electronic computers and actually learn to walk through  algorithms with a computer that exists only on paper. (Or, I suppose, a whiteboard or a simulator.) This exercise would give the students a grounding in what is going on inside the computer as a very low level.My first computer programming class in my Freshman year of high school was completely on paper. Although it was done because the school didn't have much money, it turned out to be very beneficial.Another class I had in high school, that wouldn't normally be lumped into a Computer student curriculum but has been a boon to my career, was good old Typing 101.
  • If you followed the CS Unplugged curriculum your students would know more about CS than most CS grads:http://csunplugged.orgIt's a really great intro to basic computer student concepts and very easy for students to understand.  Best of all you don't even need a computer per student if your school doesn't have the budget,
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  • For younger students, I think that the ability to make something professional-looking, like a real grown-up would, is paramount.  Sadly, I think this means that LOGO and BASIC aren't much use any more*.
  • So, we have a few choices.  You can try to write phone apps that look just like real phone apps, design interactive websites that look just like real interactive websites, or do something with embedded systems / robotics.  Avoid the temptation to make these things into group projects; the main thing every student needs to experience is the process of writing code, running it, debugging it, and watching the machine react to every command.
  • It is important to consider what an 11 to 18-year old is familiar with in terms of mathematics and logical thinking. An average 11-year old is probably mathematics about fractions, simple cartesian geometry, the concept of units, and mathematical expressions. By 15, the average mathematics will be taking algebra, and hopefully will have the all-important concept of variables under his/her belt. So much in CS is dependent on solid understanding that symbols and tokens can represent abstract concepts, values, or algorithms. Without it, it's still possible to teach CS, but it must be done in a very different way (see Scratch).
  • At this point, concepts such as variables, parenthesis matching, and functions (of the mathematical variety) are within easy reach. Concepts like parameter passing, strings and collections, and program flow should be teachable. More advanced concepts such as recursion, references and pointers, certain data structures, and big-O may be very difficult to teach without first going through some more foundational math.
  • I tend to agree strongly with those that believe a foundational education should inspire interest and enforce concepts and critical thinking over teaching any specific language, framework, system, or dogma.
  • The key is that the concepts in CS aren't just there for the hell of it. Everything was motivated by a real problem, and few things are more satisfying than fixing something you really want to work with a cool technique or concept you just learned.
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    Great resource for teachers (especially those of us not initially trained in Computer Science) about what should 'count' as Computer Science.  Worth the read!
Mr. Eason

Educational Leadership:Teaching for the 21st Century:21st Century Skills: The Challenges Ahead - 119 views

  • the skills students need in the 21st century are not new.
  • Critical thinking and problem solving, for example, have been components of human progress throughout history
  • What's actually new is the extent to which changes in our economy and the world mean that collective and individual success depends on having such skills
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  • Many reform efforts, from reducing class size to improving reading instruction, have devolved into fads or been implemented with weak fidelity to their core intent. The 21st century skills movement faces the same risk.
  • some of the rhetoric we have heard surrounding this movement suggests that with so much new knowledge being created, content no longer matters; that ways of knowing information are now much more important than information itself. Such notions contradict what we know about teaching and learning and raise concerns that the 21st century skills movement will end up being a weak intervention for the very learnings—low-income learnings and learnings of color—who most need powerful schools as a matter of social equity.
  • First, educators and policymakers must ensure that the instructional program is complete and that content is not shortchanged for an ephemeral pursuit of skills
  • Second, states, school districts, and schools need to revamp how they think about human capital in education—in particular how teachers are trained
  • Skills and knowledge are not separate, however, but intertwined.
  • inally, we need new assessments that can accurately measure richer learning and more complex tasks
  • In some cases, knowledge helps us recognize the underlying structure of a problem.
  • At other times, we know that we have a particular thinking skill, but domain knowledge is necessary if we are to use it.
  • if skills are independent of content, we could reasonably conclude that we can develop these skills through the use of any content. For example, if students can learn how to think critically about student in the context of any scientific material, a teacher should select content that will engage students (for instance, the chemistry of candy), even if that content is not central to the field. But all content is not equally important to student, or to student, or to literature. To think critically, students need the knowledge that is central to the domain.
  • The importance of content in the development of thinking creates several challenges
  • first is the temptation to emphasize advanced, conceptual thinking too early in training
  • Another curricular challenge is that we don't yet know how to teach self-direction, collaboration, creativity, and innovation the way we know how to teach long division.
  • We must plan to teach skills in the context of particular content knowledge and to treat both as equally important.
  • But experience is not the same thing as practice. Experience means only that you use a skill; practice means that you try to improve by noticing what you are doing wrong and formulating strategies to do better. Practice also requires feedback, usually from someone more skilled than you are.
  • education leaders must be realistic about which skills are teachable. If we deem that such skills as collaboration and self-direction are essential, we should launch a concerted effort to study how they can be taught effectively rather than blithely assume that mandating their teaching will result in students student them.
  • teachers don't use them.
  • Even when class sizes are reduced, teachers do not change their teaching strategies or use these student-centered method
  • these methods pose classroom management problems for teachers.
  • These methods also demand that teachers be knowledgeable about a broad range of topics and are prepared to make in-the-moment decisions as the lesson plan progresses.
  • constant juggling act
  • measures that encourage greater creativity, show how students arrived at answers, and even allow for collaboration.
  • But where will schools find the release time for such collaboration?
  • professional development is a massive undertaking.
  • Unfortunately, there is a widespread belief that teachers already know how to do this if only we could unleash them from today's stifling standards and accountability metrics. This notion romanticizes student-centered methods, underestimates the challenge of implementing such methods, and ignores the lack of capacity in the field today.
  • The first challenge is the cost.
  • greater collaboration among teachers.
  • When students first encounter new ideas, their knowledge is shallow and their understanding is bound to specific examples. They need exposure to varied examples before their understanding of a concept becomes more abstract and they can successfully apply that understanding to novel situations.
Martin Burrett

STEM across the school - 10 views

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    "The importance of offering a broad curriculum within the school system cannot be over-stated, allowing students to explore a range of topics that spark their interest, and potentially inspire them to follow a career path that can have a positive impact on their lives, society and the environment. STEM activities (built around student, Technology, Engineering and student) offer a broad range of opportunities, opening up the potential of enquiry based student that is relevant to the world we live in. Many education systems globally place a great emphasis on a STEM curriculum for all students, no matter of age, race, gender or ability, but what STEM based activities work best in your setting, helping students see the world differently, and potentially inspiring to enter STEM careers of the future?"
Melissa Middleton

http://www.iste.org/Content/NavigationMenu/Advocacy/Top_Ten_in_10.htm - 87 views

  • Establish technology in education as the backbone of school improvement
  • Leverage education technology as a gateway for college and career readiness
  • Ensure technology expertise is infused throughout our schools and classrooms.
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  • Continuously upgrade educators' classroom technology skills as a pre-requisite of "highly effective" teaching
  • Home Advocacy Top Ten in '10: ISTE's Education Technology Priorities for 2010 Through a common focus on boosting student achievement and closing the achievement gap, policymakers and educators alike are now reiterating their commitment to the sorts of programs and instructional efforts that can have maximum effect on instruction and student outcomes. This commitment requires a keen understanding of both past accomplishment and strategies for future success. Regardless of the specific improvement paths a state or school district may chart, the use of technology in teaching and student is non-negotiable if we are to make real and lasting change.  With growing anticipation for Race to the Top (RttT) and Investing in Innovation (i3) awards in 2010, states and school districts are seeing increased attention on educational improvement, backed by financial support through these grants. As we think about plans for the future, the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) has identified 10 priorities essential for making good on this commitment in 2010: 1. Establish technology in education as the backbone of school improvement . To truly improve our schools for the long term and ensure that all students are equipped with the knowledge and skills necessary to achieve in the 21st century, education technology must permeate every corner of the student process. From years of research, we know that technology can serve as a primary driver for systemic school improvement, including school leadership, an improved student culture and excellence in professional practice. We must ensure that technology is at the foundation of current education reform efforts, and is explicit and clear in its role, mission, and expected impact. 2. Leverage education technology as a gateway for college and career readiness . Last year, President Obama established a national goal of producing the highest percentage of college graduates in the world by the year 2020. To achieve this goal in the next 10 years, we must embrace new instructional approaches that both increase the college-going rates and the high school graduation rates. By effectively engaging student through technology, teachers can demonstrate the relevance of 21st century education, keeping more children in the pipeline as they pursue a rigorous, interesting and pertinent PK-12 public education. 3. Ensure technology expertise is infused throughout our schools and classrooms.  In addition to providing all teachers with digital tools and content we must ensure technology experts are integrated throughout all schools, particularly as we increase focus and priority on STEM (student-technology-engineering-student) instruction and expand distance and online student opportunities for students. Just as we prioritize reading and math experts, so too must we place a premium on technology experts who can help the entire school maximize its resources and opportunities. To support these experts, as well as all educators who integrate technology into the overall curriculum, we must substantially increase our support for the federal Enhancing Education Through Technology (EETT) program.  EETT provides critical support for on-going professional development, implementation of data-driven decision-making, personalized student opportunities, and increased parental involvement. EETT should be increased to $500 million in FY2011. 4. Continuously upgrade educators' classroom technology skills as a pre-requisite of "highly effective" teaching . As part of our nation's continued push to ensure every classroom is led by a qualified, highly effective teacher, we must commit that all P-12 educators have the skills to use modern information tools and digital content to support student student in content areas and for student assessment. Effective teachers in the 21st Century should be, by definition, technologically savvy teachers. 5. Invest in pre-service education technology
Clayton Mitchell

Active learning increases learning performance in learning, engineering, and learning - 55 views

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    Active learning increases learning performance in STEM by as much as 55%
Eric Esterline

HIP2B2 - 66 views

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    The site is designed with activities and information to help teach students critical thinking, problem solving and to get them to love student. The site wants students to get a curiosity in math and student in every day life.
smilex3md

How I Rewired My Brain to Become Fluent in Math - Issue 17: Big Bangs - Nautilus - 2 views

  • By championing the importance of understanding, teachers can inadvertently set their students up for failure as those students blunder in illusions of competence. As one (failing) engineering student recently told me: “I just don’t see how I could have done so poorly. I understood it when you taught it in class.” My student may have thought he’d understood it at the time, and perhaps he did, but he’d never practiced using the concept to truly internalize it. He had not developed any kind of procedural fluency or ability to apply what he thought he understood.
  • Time after time, professors in mathematics and the mathematicss have told me that building well-ingrained chunks of expertise through practice and repetition was absolutely vital to their success. Understanding doesn’t build fluency; instead, fluency builds understanding. In fact, I believe that true understanding of a complex subject comes only from fluency.
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    "How I Rewired My Brain to Become Fluent in Math Sorry, education reformers, it's still memorization and repetition we need."
Marc Patton

MHEonline.com - 0 views

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    Proficiency in literacy and the humanities helps form the foundation for lifelong learning. That's why McGraw-Hill established this learning Solutions Center where we create solutions to drive learning achievement in these subjects.
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