thinking

When I began my work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2013, I was surprised to find both confusion and concern over teaching with technologies from the millennial preservice teachers I worked with- so-called tech-savvy digital natives. Little coursework and even fewer opportunities in practicum/student teaching placements offered experience planning for or implementing technology in the...
Two years ago, Kenwood Elementary elementary in Champaign, IL teamed up several Colleges at the University of Illinois and the local social think tank, CTRL-Shift.  At the basis of this collaboration is the idea that teaching all students the skills of computational thinking is an exercise in social justice and community empowerment in line with our school’s technology vision statement: Through...
A group of disparate individuals, engaged in passionate discussion, sit leaning in, elbow to elbow, in a darkened bar with drinks in hand.  Many a revolution has started with that same picture right? CTRL-Shift (http://ctrlshift.mste.illinois.edu/), for me and for many others, has been just that: A revolution.  Begun by a group of local entrepreneurs and University professors, this social think...
Codecraft Lab, a 501(c)3 public charity in Brevard County, FL, began working this school year with local public schools to create after-school clubs that teach students how to create with computer coding while focusing on student expression and creativity. Codecraft Lab currently works with three schools to offer 118 students in grades three through six the opportunity to learn to code using...
A former student of mine, now in education herself, posed this question on Facebook: "Teacher friends, tomorrow is the day before a vacation [Thanksgiving]. How are you addressing the [Ferguson] grand jury announcement." Still from Carlos' upcoming video My response is longer than seemed appropriate for a Facebook comment box, so here goes...First of all, I'll reframe the question: how have I...
Soft Circuits: Crafting e-Fashion with DIY Electronics explores the field of electronics and "e-textiles," which involves making physical computing projects based in fabrics and other everyday materials. This volume incorporates microprocessors into these materials and programs them with an accessible tool called Modkit to further enhance e-fashions like light-up wristbands and t-shirts, as well...
Short Circuits: Crafting e-Puppets with DIY Electronics explores the field of electronics and "e-textiles," which involves making physical computing projects based in fabrics and other everyday materials. This volume focuses that exploration on the use of electronic hand puppets, sound-enabled storyboards, and DIY flashlight-enabled shadow puppetry in order to delve into literacy and...
Script Changers: Digital Storytelling with Scratch focuses on how stories offer an important lens for seeing the world as a series of systems and provides opportunities for young people to create interactive and animated stories about the systems around them. The projects in this book utilize the Scratch visual programming environment as a means to tell stories about how to effect change in...
jpeg.jpg All rights reserved. Gaming the System: Designing with Gamestar Mechanic orients readers to the nature of games as systems, how game designers need to think in terms of complex interactions between game elements and rules, and how to pull out systems concepts in the design process. The core curriculum uses Gamestar Mechanic, an online game design...
This collection highlights and supports the book series Interconnections: Understanding Systems through Digital Design. Each book of the series uses a design-based approach to learning and offers up a toolkit for supporting systems thinking in ways that are aligned to standards but also relevant to youth interests in digital culture.

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