What is it like teaching CS at a public school? (Tweet thread)

Full thread on Twitter

...

We've been trying to "replace" school CS curriculum forever – hackathons, bootcamps, additional programs... a lot of them rely on building additional logistical structures (the event... the nonprofit... etc.) but how much would it take for a school teacher to test something new?

I've had a few really good and engaging intro to CS teachers. They are very underrated in schools... I think people tend to talk about those teachers teaching harder classes so much (like multivar calc or physics c) but although their content is definitely harder to teach – their classes kind of... run themselves? I remember my multivar calculus class was just a room of math enthusiasts, and a majority of us are capable of driving ourselves to learn.

Intro classes, especially CS, are different. Yeah, sure, my CS principles class may not have presented the most accurate information when it comes to concepts, but it sure as hell was fun, and it got me to a place where I can now drive myself to learn.

Any nonprofit/bootcamp programs have a biased audience since the motive to attend an extracurricular program is always self-driven... nothing compares to an actual school to an almost random sample of students – like, how many of them can I hype up about learning about CS/tech?


Additionally...

Why not become a teacher full-time? Teachers have all my respects esp. through last year, but I think I'm also more interested in building "experimental" alternatives, e.g. those with @ExecuteBig & @CodeDay. They are faster to build and iterate with much less overhead.

We have thought about bringing what @ExecuteBig has to schools by partnering with them (e.g. our "Events" program), but ultimately, we have much less of a say than educators at the school. This is also what makes me curious about what happens on the inside.


Permalink: https://mingjie.dev/blog/teaching/