Just saw this:
Evaluation metric idea: take snapshots of students' grades each week (specifically, the grade they actually see in your LMS). How well do these correlate with your final assigned grade? Were students getting good estimates?
— Austin Cory Bart (@AustinCorgiBart) May 18, 2019 It made me think of a couple of conversations I had with more senior teachers early in my career.
They'd tell me "by and large, you know what the kids are going to get after a few week.
Now that high school seniors have all committed to their respective colleges I though I'd share some information on Hunter's incoming Daedalus (honors CS) cohort.
I joke about the first cohort saying that nobody applied to the program. That's kind of true. I jointed Hunter a little over three years ago in late January. That was after high school seniors had already applied to college and at that time the program didn't exist.
It's that time of the year to write a series of blog posts about SIGCSE. I thought I'd start with one on the keynotes. There were four keynote speakers. Marie desJardins, Gloria Townsend, Mark Guzdial, and Blair Taylor. I wasn't at the first timer's lunch where Townsend spoke so I won't talk at all about that keynote.
I'm also not going to summarize the talks. Andy Ko wrote up a terrific summary of his SIGCSE experience and did a much better job giving overviews to the keynotes than I ever could so I'll just refer you to Andy's blog post.
The theme of this year's To Code and Beyond was Computational Thinking. Mark Guzdial gave the keynote. While the talk isn't currently online, check out this talk that Mark gave last March. It's not the same but the second halves are and well worth a look.
In the first half, Mark talked about other types of "thinking." Scientific thinking, engineering thinking and even historical thinking. All had a good amount of overlap with both each other and with computational thinking even as we haven't yet settled on what computational thinking actually is.
Today was the fifth "To Code and Beyond" - a one day conference hosted at Cornell Technion and once again Diane Levitt put together a great show. The theme was Computational Thinking and the day consisted of a variety of talks, panels, and activities. I plan on writing about one panel in particular but for today I wanted to address something that came up as a question. One attendee asked a panel about the achievement gap - the fact that when the CS movement got started in NY some of the more innovative and interesting work was being done with some of our most vulnerable students.
I've never been much of a New Years person. I get up really early and so don't usually stay up late and more to the point, as any teacher knows, the year really goes from September through June with that really long much needed weekend that you regular folks call July and August tacked on to separate years.
This whole January first thing is really more of a half time break or perhaps an intermission.
I spent yesterday evening at the Cooper Union in their Great Hall, a place famous for Abraham Lincoln's speech that some say propelled him to the presidency.
I was there in the audience watching as the Sloan Foundation and the Fund for the City of New York awarded seven public school teachers with an ward for "Excellence in the Teaching of Science and Mathematics."
I was their to see my friend Dave Deutsch, a long time public school physics teacher receive the honor.
I saw this tweet the day along with the ensuing thread:
Seriously, who emails a professor with words like "u" and "plz hlp"? Am I allowed to put language in my syllabus that penalizes students for obnoxious, intentional misspellings? Maybe: -1% to your course grade multiplied by the edit distance of the word with its correction?
— Austin Cory Bart (@AustinCorgiBart) November 30, 2018 I wanted to reply but as usual, I decided to reply in a blog post so that it doesn't get lost in the Twitterverse.
I spent this past Saturday morning up at the Microsoft building in Times Square. What was I doing there? Aankit Patel invited me to check out the professional development that he and his team organized for the teachers involved in the assorted CSforAllNYC programs that his office runs. Wow.
Lots of great things going on. I was only able to stay for a couple of hours but I spent some time in two rooms run by TEALS, a room of BJC teachers, a group working with p5.
We've heard it many times with computer science - "the kids know more than the teacher." On the one hand, the truth is that this isn't so much the case. Kids might use computers all the time but they don't necessarily know much about them or about computer science (link 1, link 2). Then you have students who think they know all about CS but really don't. They might have picked up a bit of coding somewhere but more often than not, the knowledge is pretty superficial.