4 Replies Latest reply on Nov 13, 2011 9:04 AM by glen_w

    Incorporating Computer Science into STEM


      I was recently informed that The Presidents Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) report calls for fundamental changes in K-12 STEM education in the United States, including the incorporation of computer science (CS) as an essential component. I am not sure if this report is calling for a change in the National  Science Benchmarks or standards. The following are the areas PCAST is requesting information on.


      • What CS concepts are important to effective elementary, secondary, and post-secondary curricula? Among these concepts, which are commonly found in curricula today? Which are missing?
      • What do teachers need (including preparation and training, tools, and resources) to be able to deliver CS education effectively?
      • What factors are important in promoting student interest in CS?


      Consider schools you teach or are involved in. If you think it is appropriate, please submit your comments.


      You may submit your comments via email to: pcast2010comments@nitrd.gov on or before February 28, 2011. I have already done so.

        • Re: Incorporating Computer Science into STEM

          I would think there would need to be a consistent curriculum in a state/district on CS for this to an effective component in STEM. How is the CS curriculum taught in your school/district/state? Please share

          • Re: Incorporating Computer Science into STEM

            Hello Glen,


            This are excellent questions and very relevant to me because my middle school is in its first year of being a STEM focus school.  I am the technology teacher and am considering this question very closely.  Two resources that I will be using are Alice and Scratch, both object-based programming softwares.  I'm sure you are familiar with both of them.  The Alice site emphasizes the tremendous need to train more students in the area of computer science, particularly girls.  As a middle school teacher, I am very interested about how I can engage and motivate students to not only be interested in computer science, but also have them continue on in high school to more advanced types of programming.  Since we are in the early stages of implementing this focus, I have few specific thoughts or suggestings pertaining to your questions, but I am interested in seeing what others share. 


            The Intel resource, The Journey Inside, is great for introducing middle school students to computers overall.


            Best regards,


            Axel Reitzig

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