Limited exposure limits student outcomes and opportunities.
Which approach is better for your students?
Computer Science Exposure
Typical computer science programs consist of a few standalone learning experiences without any designed progression or interconnection between them.
These programs often include:
Online self-paced learning
Sporadic or unstructured activities
Treating computer science as a unit in another class
Single computer science survey class
Isolated AP Computer Science courses
Why is Exposure Not Enough?
No Depth of Knowledge.
Without a seamless progression of rigorous courses, students jump between topical areas rather than developing mastery. Lacking depth of knowledge and coding fluency, they are unable to take advantage of career and college opportunities.
Not For Every Student.
Exposure models do not provide equitable access for all students. Often learning experiences are driven by individual teachers or schools rather than offered reliably and systematically at the district level. Even if a student has the option to participate, they may be forced into a one-size-fits-all program with no regard for their learning level or style.
Many programs remove the teacher from instruction, relegating them to the role of classroom monitor or replacing them with industry professionals who lack teaching skills. These programs do not invest in giving teachers the training and resources they need to successfully deliver computer science instruction.
Our vertically-aligned curriculum pathway is a seamless sequence of rigorous courses, designed to be taught during the school day as a core subject from second through twelfth grade.
Our pathway combines eleven core computer science courses with a series of applied courses and lessons that integrate coding into other core content areas. Each course builds upon the last, contributing towards an overall set of standards-based outcomes in coding and computer science. Students are introduced to computer science fundamentals through the block-based Skylark language in elementary school. Those concepts and techniques spiral through the middle and high school curricula as students progress towards mastery of the professional line-based languages (including Python and Java) necessary for college and career readiness.
Why are Pathways Necessary?
College and Career Outcomes.
College and career opportunities require students to have deep computer science knowledge and coding fluency. TechSmart’s pathway is designed from the ground up to provide not only the skills they need, but the certification and portfolio to prove it.
Equity Is More Than Access.
All students will be able to access a course taught inside the school day, but they will not necessarily have an equitable opportunity to learn and advance. A course must be able to adapt to the learning style and level of individual students. The key lies in teachers’ ability to understand and accommodate their students’ needs, which TechSmart empowers by fully differentiating the curriculum within every course.
Building Computer Science Teaching Capacity.
For a computer science program to thrive, it needs a sustainable teaching force across the K-12 spectrum with the deep subject matter expertise. Knowledgeable teachers are better equipped to deliver high-quality instruction and assist their students. Their job satisfaction is also higher due to increased self-efficacy and confidence.
Our Curriculum Pathway
A seamless progression of rigorous courses from second through twelfth grade.