Thursday, December 6, 2018
A robot is just a pile of parts without the instructions to complete a task, and this week, Milwaukee Public Schools students learned computer coding that has applications in hundreds of industries across the globe. During Computer Science Education Week (CSEd Week), December 3–7, 2018, schools were encouraged to have students take part in Hour of Code through an assortment of programs available online. CSEd Week is promoted by Code.org, a nonprofit dedicated to expanding computer science education.
In addition to in-school activities, staff from the MPS Instructional Technology team plus students from Cass Street School, Fairview, and Milwaukee School of Languages led sessions for Central Services employees to experience coding. Notably, about two-thirds of the students showing adults how to code were girls. The computer science industry is proactively engaging with girls to explore coding as a career path.
“Coding is a set of instructions, but it’s hard to understand the nature of it without trying it,” said Neva Moga, Instructional Technology Supervisor. “Inviting our staff and students to try coding gives them a new perspective on this field that impacts daily life from stop lights to jumbo jets.”
MPS has a wide range of technology and computer science classes available to students, including a one-to-one Chromebook ratio in schools. In addition, technology spaces are increasing across the district and include makerspaces, Fab Labs, culinary arts labs, robotics labs, and more.
Families are encouraged to inquire about technology available in schools and to learn more about individual school offerings by contacting school sites for a personal tour.