Smithsonian Science Education Center and Department of Defense Launch New Initiative to Develop Computational Thinking Skills in STEM

The Smithsonian Science Education Center has published Smithsonian Science for Computational Thinking, a set of freely available instructional units for grades three and five that integrate science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and computational thinking (CT) under an Inter-Agency Agreement with the U.S. Department of Defense STEM Office. Using phenomenon- and problem-driven pedagogy, elementary school students use computational thinking skills to define and solve real-world problems and explain scientific phenomena in a high-touch to high-tech environment. 

Smithsonian Science for Computational Thinking promotes transdisciplinary learning and convergence education by integrating STEM, CT and literacy in the pursuit of solving real-world problems and explaining scientific phenomena. The instructional units are aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards, the Computer Science Teachers Association K-12 Computer Science Standards, the International Society for Technology in Education Standards and the Common Core Mathematics Standards. 

In December 2022, the White House held a summit announcing the launch of the STEMM Opportunity Alliance and highlighted Smithsonian Science for Computational Thinking as part of the Smithsonian's commitment to make STEM equity a priority and cultivate the STEM talent of tomorrow. As part of the Smithsonian Science for Computational Thinking initiative, the Smithsonian Science Education Center is addressing the inequity in access to broadband and computational thinking education for rural students. This initiative will upskill educators in nine rural communities near military bases in three states in the Midwest and will include studying the impact of STEM +CT on 300 low-income students where broadband is limited. These free high-touch to high-tech resources and professional development will then be scaled nationally. By taking a high-touch to high-tech approach to teaching computational thinking in a science classroom, all students can improve their digital literacy—with and without access to computers and other high-tech devices.

About the Smithsonian Science Education Center

The Smithsonian Science Education Center (SSEC) is transforming K-12 Education Through Science in collaboration with communities across the globe. The SSEC is nationally and internationally recognized for the quality of its programs and its impact on K-12 science education. Visit the SSEC and Smithsonian Science for Computational Thinking websites and follow SSEC on Twitter and Facebook

Source: Smithsonian Science Education Center


Tags: Education, Global Goals, STEM

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Smithsonian Science Education Center is Transforming K-12 Education Through Science in Collaboration with Communities Across the Globe

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