800 Students in 23 NYC Public Schools Try Out New EDC Course

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Less than a year after the launch of EDC's NSF-funded Beauty and Joy of Computing in NYC (BJC4NYC) project, 800 students in 23 NYC schools are testing a new AP Computer Science Principles course that EDC has designed based on a University of California, Berkeley course. EDC has provided students’ teachers with two weeks of face-to-face professional development and 80 hours of online PD to support them in teaching the course. Co-PI June Mark said, “Kids are doing exciting and creative things with the BJC materials, and there’s a community forming among the teachers that will contribute to the materials development.” Recently, the course became part of the larger Computer Science for All initiative in NYC, which seeks to engage every NYC K-12 student in computational thinking and computer science ideas. 

On November 9, the BJC4NYC project was featured at the NSF’s Next Generation STEM Learning for All Forum. In 2016, the team plans to conduct visits and observations in all BJC4NYC classrooms. To date, Co-PI Paul Goldenberg, Mary Fries, June Mark, and Brian Harvey have visited classrooms in Brooklyn, The Bronx, Queens, and Manhattan. “It really is wonderful to see these kids so intensely focused,” Paul Goldenberg noted, “Their projects have been beautiful and varied. Early in the course, one girl built a program that turned the “Mondrian project” that we suggested—colored rectangles with black borders—on its head to make striking images composed of overlapping black rectangles with brilliantly colored borders. We’re all eager to see what kinds of projects they’ll develop as they learn more!”

In addition to UC-Berkeley, other key partners in the initiative include the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) and the New York City Foundation for Computer Science Education (CSNYC).

Last Updated: December 2015