⭐ Texas educators: our K-5 Tech Apps curriculum is a state-approved instructional material. Learn More.
Teaching computer science in the classroom has been a discussion point in education for a while. In 2014, Hadi Patrovi, Code.org co-founder, gave a TEDx talk emphasizing the importance of it: “Now Computer Science, of course, is about technology,” he said, “but the reason we should be teaching it to our students is because actually, computer science is broader than that. It’s about logic, problem-solving, and creativity.”
Are you considering integrating a computer science program into your elementary or middle school? Are your students or parents asking for opportunities to build these skills during the school day, so they do not have to rely on summer camps and after-school programs? Are you asking yourself where you will find the capacity to launch a successful computer science program?
After many discussions with administrators, educators, and curriculum developers, we have gleaned these three key insights for launching a successful computer science program in elementary and middle schools.
Computer science is all about problem solving and analytics. These skills can be developed through coding curriculum, hardware curriculum, engineering curriculum, and many different interest generating modules. A key factor for success requires the definition of a vision for your computer science offering:
Did I mention that computer science is all about problem-solving and analytics? It does not require a PhD or a Master’s degree. An English educator who can construct, edit, and finalize a well-written essay will be able to follow the same analytics to develop computer science skills in students. A history educator who can explain and dissect patterns in history will be able to leverage the same analytical thought processes to develop computer science skills in students. The key skills for a successful computer science educator include:
As with any new initiative, educator support is critical to a successful launch. Whether it be professional development, instructional support, troubleshooting support, or a network of educators forging the same road, confidence builds success. If you would not expect your educator to learn math online, why would you expect him/her to learn computer science online?
Integrating a new course in the already busy school day is a challenge. However, when broken down into smaller decisions, the solution comes within reach. What is your vision for bringing computer science curriculum into the school day? Do you know an educator passionate about building these skills in students? Whatever your vision, know that there are resources available to accelerate educator confidence in teaching computer science.
If you are looking for full-semester, comprehensive Skills-building, interactive computer science curriculum for grades 3-8 that any educator can teach, check out the Codelicious product offering.