• Elements of Computer Science in High School

  • What should we see in a computer science course?

    A high school computer science course should:

    • include collaborative learning through a combination of unplugged and computer-based activities such as:
      • Code walkthroughs;
      • Writing algorithms in groups;
      • Insert comments in pairs into the existing code;
      • Develop code from algorithms in pairs;
      • Decompose and construct programmatic solutions;
      • Find the bugs in code;
    • be engaging by incorporating more active learning strategies,
    • provide opportunities for students to communicate verbally and in writing using computer science terminology,
    • develop computational thinking skills,
    • provide time to reflect on new learning,
    • plan deliberate and transparent connections to careers in computer science such as guest speakers, and
    • develop resilience and persistence in all students.

  • What resources are needed for a computer science class?

    The following resources may be included in a computer science class:

    • space to allow students to collaborate with others,
    • moveable tables to allow students to be seated in small working groups,
    • hardwired PCs to provide priority network bandwidth,
    • student whiteboards (laminate cardstock) for collaboration and flexibility to solve problems,
    • word walls and other visual cues to better support struggling students.

  • How can we make this environment welcoming for our diverse learners?

    • Provide positive examples of computer scientists with diverse backgrounds.
    • Create lessons that are gender neutral.
    • Develop learning opportunities that take into consideration various points of view through classroom/group discussions.
    • Give individualized, critical feedback (“growth mindset”) with a targeted suggestion on how a project or assignment could be improved.
    • Remove visual cues and examples that may lead to stereotype threat.
    • Employ meaningful and relevant content.
    • Address misconception about the field of computer science that may propagate gender, racial, and other social stereotypes.
    • Group students by level of experience in computing.
    • Foster social networks for studying and for support, and practice working in teams.

  • Which career and college readiness skills should students acquire through this program?

    • Critical analysis
    • Professionalism
    • Self-development
    • Business skills
    • Time Management

  • Which traits should students be developing through computer science experiences?

    • Persistence
    • Dependability
    • Positivity
    • Resilience

  • Which higher-order skills are we developing in computer science?

    • Problem Solving (coding)
    • Decision-Making
    • Teamwork / collaboration
    • Code Tracing
    • Debugging
    • Writing pseudo code

  • Contact Us
    Amy Bates
    Special Projects
    Dan Blier
    Computer Science