Problem solving - Personal Innovations
Getting students excited and connecting their own personal interests to computer science. Students are asked to share something they know a lot about and teach it to a small group. Groups make a “rapid” prototype of an innovative idea and share it. Students watch a brief video about computing innovations.
Technology Foundations - What is a Computer?
Students develop a preliminary definition of a computer. To begin the lesson, the class will brainstorm possible definitions for a computer and place the results of this brainstorm on the board. Next, students will work in groups to sort pictures into “is a computer” or “is not a computer” on poster paper. Groups will place their posters around the room and briefly explain their motivations for choosing some of their most difficult categorizations.
Data Science & Analytics - Problem Solving with Big Data
Students look at how data is collected and used by organizations to solve problems in the real world. Then students are presented two scenarios that could be solved using data and brainstorm the types of data they would want to solve them and how they could collect the data. Each problem is designed to reflect a real-world service that exists. After brainstorming, students watch a video about a real-world service and record notes about what data is collected by the real-world service and how it is used.
Programming - Hour of Code
Learners of all ages get an introductory experience with coding and computer science and the potential careers these skills can lead to. Students have the opportunity to choose a number of Hour of Code lessons from Minecraft to Star Wars to Frozen. All lessons provide the opportunity for students to learn the basics of coding in a fun and engaging way.
Web Development - Exploring websites
Every website has a purpose, a reason someone created it and others use it. In this lesson, students will start to consider the purposes a website might serve, both for the users and the creators. Students will explore a handful of the most-used websites in the United States and try to figure out how each of those sites is useful for users and how they might also serve their creators.
App Development – User Interfaces
Students look an important phase of app design - prototyping a product that attempts to address user needs. In teams, students examine a paper prototype for a chat app called "Txt Ur Grndkdz". Through using this paper prototype, students get a chance to see how a simple paper prototype can be used to quickly test ideas and assumptions before we ever get to the computer. After "using" the provided prototype students begin to identify ways to improve the next iteration.
App Development – Intro to App Lab (students 13+)
Cybersecurity - Simple Encryption
Students are introduced to the need for encryption and simple techniques for breaking (or cracking) secret messages. Students try their own hand at cracking a message encoded with the classic Caesar cipher and also a Random Substitution Cipher. The most important aspect of this lesson is to understand how and why encryption plays a role in all of our lives every day on the Internet, and that making good encryption is not trivial.
Internet of Things - User Center Design
This lesson will guide students through an abbreviated version of the design process they will be seeing throughout this unit. Students first brainstorm a list of potential users of smart clothing. As a class, they then group these ideas into broad categories and each group will choose one category of user. Groups repeat this process to brainstorm needs or concerns of their user, eventually categorizing these needs and choosing one to focus on. Finally, students design a piece of smart clothing, using the specific needs and concerns they brainstormed to guide their decision making.