STEM Institute Helps Drive CS4ALL Teacher Training

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Professional development for teachers is a critical component of the Computer Science for All initiative, and one such opportunity is the STEM Institute. A three-day experience, the Institute enables teachers to integrate CS into existing content areas so that students can use computational thinking, problem solving, creativity, and critical thinking across a variety of subjects. 

These sessions were attended by 174 teachers, provided by several curricular partners including Code/Interactive, Edhesive, Globaloria, and Vidcode, and most recently took place at Stuyvesant High School on February 21-23, 2017. Each of the STEM Institute classrooms contained high-spirited teachers who eagerly absorbed the lessons taught by these expert partners from the STEM world.

One class taught teachers how to bring coding to their respective classrooms. Another discussed using algebraic concepts to teach students how to program their own video games. The Robotics lesson was not confined to classroom study, but actually spilled into the hallway where bright-eyed teachers were taught to incorporate engineering and robotics using LEGOs. The mechanical creations bounced and whizzed as they discussed how best to implement what they learned at their home school.

“This is one of the training opportunities for teachers to learn about CS topics that they can incorporate back into their classes,” noted Debbie Marcus, Executive Director of Computer Science Education. “Whether they are math teachers, third grade teachers, or science teachers, the learning skills and content in computer science can beautifully marry with their current ideas and content areas back at their home schools.”

As a key part of the DOE’s vision of Equity and Excellence for All, the Computer Science for All initiative will ensure that by 2025, every student receives computer science education in elementary, middle, and high school. Over the next 10 years, the DOE will train 5,000 teachers who will bring computer science instruction to the City’s 1.1 million public school students.

The Computer Science for All initiative receives private support from a range of foundations, corporations, nonprofits, families, and individuals. Lead funders include CSNYC, Robin Hood, Math for America (MƒA), and the Robin Hood Education and Technology Fund. Generous support is also provided by AOL Charitable Foundation; Alexandria Real Estate Equities Inc.; The Hutchins Family Foundation; The Paulson Family Foundation; Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen, & Katz; Hearst Foundations; Code.org; Ron and Topher Conway; Daniel and Jane Och Family Foundation; ABNY Foundation; The May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation; The Rudin Foundation; and Nancy and Alan Schwartz.

The Fund for Public Schools thanks all of the mentioned partners who have done so much to make this initiative possible. We hope you will consider joining our ever-growing list of generous funders who support NYC’s future leaders.

David Belsky