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  1. Lynn Hodge
  2. https://tpte.utk.edu/people/lynn-hodge-phd/
  3. Professor and Director
  4. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  5. University of Tennessee - Knoxville, CEEMS - University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Theory and Practice in Teacher Education, Univ of TN
  1. Nick Kim
  2. Graduate Teaching/Research Associate
  3. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  4. CEEMS - University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Theory and Practice in Teacher Education, Univ of TN, University of Tennessee - Knoxville
  1. Joshua Rosenberg
  2. https://joshuamrosenberg.com
  3. Assistant Professor, STEM Education
  4. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  1. Amir Sadovnik
  2. Assistant Professor
  3. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  4. University of Tennessee - Knoxville

Computer Science for Appalachia (CSA): A Research-Practice Partnership to Int...

NSF Awards: 1923509

2020 (see original presentation & discussion)

Grades K-6, Adult learners

To address the needs of students in East Tennessee Appalachia, Computer Science for Appalachia (CSA): A Research-Practice Partnership to Integrate Computer Science into Rural East Tennessee Schools creates a vision for CS and support for teachers to plan for and teach CS strategies that are responsive to students and their communities. CSA will help administrators and teachers address challenges related to teaching CS, such as access to high-quality professional learning for teachers and technical infrastructure. CSA’s collaborative work will bring together the University of Tennessee, three rural East Tennessee school districts, and key community organizations. Building and strengthening this partnership will enhance learning and lifelong outcomes for students by increasing their opportunities to engage with CS in the elementary grades. For stakeholders as well as researchers, the project will lead to an enhanced understanding of how rural school districts create opportunities for students to engage meaningfully with CS and to a strong partnership that will enhance CS education in Appalachia in the years to come.

CSA’s overarching goal is to strengthen an existing Research-Practice Partnership (RPP) through work sessions focused upon: community learning, computational thinking, the key ideas of Culturally Relevant Pedagogy (CRP), and a shared vision for the work to be carried out. The design and implementation of CS professional development (PD) for teachers will be critical to strengthening the partnership and developing resources for teachers. A subset of the RPP will co-design and co-develop the PD focused on the new Tennessee K-8 CS standards, providing the greatest opportunity for students to understand CS ideas and practices. In particular, CSA will focus on preparing K-5 teachers to (1) engage students in activities that connect with their experiences and (2) cultivate students’ interests in and understanding of CS and of global issues beyond their immediate communities. Research activities will explore teacher identity development related to CS and teaching CS, as well as teacher learning through their involvement in the PD. Evaluation will focus on efforts to strengthen the RPP and will include formative and summative feedback to be provided to the RPP leadership group. Results will be shared with those in the CS education community statewide and beyond through presentations at conferences, workshops, and publications. RPPs are critical to addressing educational challenges in rural school districts because they connect school districts with each other and university partners, and STEM teacher educators in rural communities are in urgent need of knowledge about effective models to support RPPs. This collaboration will offer new insights into the most persistent issues faced by the most isolated school districts. 

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Original Discussion from the 2020 STEM For All Video Showcase
  • Icon for: Sarah Young

    Sarah Young

    Facilitator
    May 5, 2020 | 11:50 a.m.

    Shout out to the McNealys! Families that CS together and teach together are inspiring. 

    Tell me more about the K-5 computational thinking lessons for the classroom. I see they are aligned to the new Tennessee CS standards. Are these stand alone computer science lessons or integrated? Are you using any national open education resources in this lesson development? I am excited to hear more. 

     
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    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Monica VanDieren
    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 5, 2020 | 10:43 p.m.

    Hi Sarah, thanks for your comments and questions! Our design involves integration of computer science into subjects currently taught by elementary teachers. Based on our conversations so far, it seems like connections to literacy would make sense. We are following up by drawing on the literacy curriculum used by our district partners. In addition, we are drawing on current CS curricula and tweaking based on the texts that we draw on. 

     
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    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Sarah Young
    Deborah Fields
  • Icon for: Monica VanDieren

    Monica VanDieren

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 12, 2020 | 02:33 p.m.

    Hi Sarah, 

    I'm not a part of this project, but I wanted to share a free resource that I've used to design many outreach activities for K-12 students.  It's called CS Unplugged and many of the activities in the book are authentic and as the title suggests free from the need of expensive technology.  

     
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    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Michael I. Swart
  • Icon for: Jennifer Vermillion

    Jennifer Vermillion

    Facilitator
    May 5, 2020 | 02:59 p.m.

    I applaud your focus on increasing opportunities for elementary students! I am interested in learning more about your focus on teacher identity development. Are there ongoing opportunities for teacher collaboration across the three school districts?

     
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    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 5, 2020 | 10:50 p.m.

    Hi Jennifer, we are working together with teachers in the design of the PD and as part of the research-practice leadership team. In addition, teachers across districts will participate in the PD that spans the 2020-2021 school year and into the summer. So, part of the research is about the teacher PD participants' identities, but also about the identities of the teachers who participate in the different opportunities, including PD design. An additional facet is how the research supports and informs the decisions made by the research-practice partnership. Thanks for your question and comments!

  • Icon for: Jack Broering

    Jack Broering

    Program Coordinator
    May 6, 2020 | 11:45 a.m.

    I found your project intriguing as it has the potential to stimulate interest in CS and in particular, careers in the CS field.  I would be curious to know what programming languages you might advocate using at various grade levels.  I am not a computer programmer but am familiar with some of the programming languages available today (Python, Javascript, C+, etc).  Also, how to you train teachers to deliver the CS lessons in their classrooms.  Thanks and great work!

     
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    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Joshua Rosenberg

    Joshua Rosenberg

    Co-Presenter
    May 6, 2020 | 01:38 p.m.

    Dear Jack, thank you for the encouraging post. We have not had a great deal of discussion about particular programming languages yet, though I anticipate that we will. One idea (which we haven't discussed a great deal yet) is to begin with 'unplugged' activities (not requiring a computer) and then progress to languages that are more friendly to beginners - including python (and Scratch). Block-based programming language also seems like one way to provide some support as learners progress along their programming journeys.

    Regarding preparing teachers... this is really a question we are talking about a great deal, and we are planning to design and carry out a weeklong summer institute *next summer*. Right now, one thing I can share is that we're working hard to understand what teachers would like and need most from a professional development opportunity. I am hopeful we can share more next year! Thanks again for your post.

     
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    Jack Broering
  • Icon for: Janice Cuny

    Janice Cuny

    Facilitator
    May 6, 2020 | 01:44 p.m.

    This looks like a great project. I'm sure the kids love the activities you showed.

    Have you had much push back from teachers who are not comfortable with computing and/or with giving up subject matter class time for computing? How much uptake have you seen? How much PD would you think necessary for a teacher new to computing to be able to routinely integrate computing content into their classes?

     
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    Michael I. Swart
    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 6, 2020 | 02:31 p.m.

    Hi Janice! these are great questions. We are in the first year of the project, and in the process of working with a group of teachers/district leaders to develop PD. The teachers we are working with are supportive of CS and see it has a priority for their schools and districts. However, each district, each school is different. Therefore, each district, each school appears to prioritize CS differently. We are developing different approaches based on the expressed needs of the district/school. One point seems to be clear based on our previous work in rural school districts: The nature of the PD can have consequences for how teachers take up activities and content (CS in this case). 

    For this coming year, and into summer 2021, we have two weeks of PD planned. I am not sure if this will "be enough," however, this will give us an opportunity to see where we are and develop next steps. I think we will have more to share at that point about teacher buy-in and approaches to support it. Thanks again for your comments and questions!

     
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    Michael I. Swart
  • Icon for: Deborah Fields

    Deborah Fields

    Temporary Assistant Professor
    May 6, 2020 | 02:24 p.m.

    Love the way this is seen as a partnership. What are some of the ways that researchers & district leaders & teachers have learned to work together?

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 6, 2020 | 02:42 p.m.

    Hi Deborah, we are in our first year so having conversations about CS, what it looks like, and connections with school/district priorities. One goal is to understand each other's context. We are also working together to develop PD that addresses CS integration. I think the PD development will serve as a vehicle to further establish the collaboration and to help us develop school/district plans for CS. I am interested in how research collaborations will look concretely. Thanks for your comment and question!

  • Icon for: Dave Miller

    Dave Miller

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 7, 2020 | 09:21 a.m.

    Terrific project, and thanks for sharing, here on the SFA. I'm curious what steps your project might be taking to connect with industry projects that can inform CT & CS work in K-12 schools. Thanks!

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 7, 2020 | 07:56 p.m.

    Hi Dave, this is a great question. We are currently in our first year so we will be reaching out to industry and other community organizations next year. We host a regional STEM hub that connects with industry partners and other groups in providing STEM community outreach so one of the initial steps would be to build on these current relationships. Any thoughts that you have about connecting with industry projects are welcome and appreciated!

  • Icon for: W. Adrion

    W. Adrion

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 7, 2020 | 10:34 a.m.

    While our RPP district partner (medium size, urban) differs from your rural partners, we are addressing many of the same issues: CS/CT integration at the elementary level, teacher PD, teacher lesson development, economically-challenged students (80% of the district's students receive some form of assistance). Take a look at our video: https://stemforall2020.videohall.com/presentations/1848 and let's find a time to talk.

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 7, 2020 | 07:57 p.m.

    Wow, what a great project. Enjoyed your video. Let's definitely find some time to chat. Thanks for reaching out.

    Best,

  • Icon for: Eric Hamilton

    Eric Hamilton

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 7, 2020 | 11:24 a.m.

    This is so inspiring.  My family is from Appalachia, so this has all the more meaning for me to watch.  I wonder if there is a way to connect any of your students with students in other places, now that we are so virtual?  We have students in multiple sites and there may be a way that they can do projects together.  If interested, look at our video Just noodling, and either way, thank you for a great presentation.

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 7, 2020 | 08:00 p.m.

    Hi Eric, thanks for your comments. What a wonderful project and presentation. I love the collaboration and learning across sites. Would like to explore some possibilities in connecting our students with other students. Best,

  • Icon for: Tamra Carpenter

    Tamra Carpenter

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 9, 2020 | 11:33 a.m.

    What a lovely video! It looks like a terrific project. As I watched your video, I wondered about whether any of the PD is delivered online or if it is all in-person. We have a project developing an online PD course in computational thinking for high school teachers, but there might be even greater demand in lower grades. Also, could you describe what you hope to learn from the project's research?

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 11, 2020 | 10:38 a.m.

    For this planning grant, we hope to learn about teachers' identities in relation to CS, which includes their ideas about CS (practices that define CS), there valuations about CS practices, and their own developing competence related to these practices. A second aspect is about the strengthening of the RPP. Based on what we have learned so far, there seem to be two cases of school districts. We have also identified the constructs of boundary objects, boundary events, and brokers as potentially helpful in our work going forward as we understand these two cases more thoroughly. 

  • Icon for: Tamra Carpenter

    Tamra Carpenter

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2020 | 08:11 p.m.

    Thanks, Lynn. Could you elaborate a bit on the notion of boundary objects and events? I have not heard these terms before and am intrigued.

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Lynn Hodge
  • Icon for: Lynn Hodge

    Lynn Hodge

    Lead Presenter
    Professor and Director
    May 12, 2020 | 03:05 p.m.

    Paul Cobb and his colleagues write about these constructs (drawing on Wenger, 1998) in the context of implementing ambitious mathematics instruction in school districts. I think the ideas are relevant to CS integration at scale. 

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Michael I. Swart
  • May 12, 2020 | 05:57 p.m.

    Thanks for sharing this project. Can you expound on the types of data this project produces and how that data supports your research questions?

  • Further posting is closed as the event has ended.

Multiplex Discussion
  • Icon for: Kathryn Hobbs

    Kathryn Hobbs

    Researcher
    October 21, 2020 | 04:21 p.m.

    This video is included in the curated playlist for the Multiplex's October 2020 Theme of the Month, Identity Development and STEM Learning. Please feel free to post a message to the presenter here and also participate in this month's webinar panel and theme of the month discussion.

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