1. Kathryn Guimond
  2. Director, Department of Learning and Instruction
  4. Science Museum of Minnesota
  1. Lauren Causey
  2. Senior Evaluation & Research Associate
  4. Science Museum of Minnesota
  1. Aki Shibata-Pliner
  2. LinCT Program Manager
  4. Science Museum of Minnesota
  1. Kaleen Tison Povis
  2. Senior Evaluation & Research Associate
  4. Science Museum of Minnesota

LinCT: Linking Educators, Youth, and Learners in Computational Thinking

NSF Awards: 1513009

2017 (see original presentation & discussion)

Grades K-6, Undergraduate, Informal / multi-age

Based at the Science Museum of Minnesota, we will follow the yearlong journey of an all-female, multigenerational professional learning community as they build comfort and confidence with in-depth and expanded use of technology. Gathering both pre-service teachers and high school youth from traditionally underrepresented communities, this project creates a space where youth and adults work together on an innovative research project aimed at impacting the field of teaching technology. We will highlight and show the connections across our program model, project staff, and community partners.

Their pathway includes content training, professional development, and explicit opportunities to try out new teaching practices. Merging informal and formal educational practices, they have taught technology content in both summer camp and school based settings. These varied settings provide an opportunity for them to reflect on the best ways to share learning experiences with technology for both youth participants and their teachers.

Research is central to the project and to the video. Very few museums are working so deeply with emerging teaching professionals in partnership with universities. Combining informal and formal teaching experiences enables us to ask questions about what teachers from those respective settings can learn from each other and what emerging classroom educators can learn from teaching in informal learning spaces. An additional opportunity provided by this project is the inclusion of high school youth. Using a near-peer mentoring framework will help us understand ways that teen girls use role models as inspiration to pursue careers in technology fields or in teaching professions.

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