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Technology & Computer Science [clear filter]
Wednesday, November 14


Developmentally Appropriate Precoding Experiences for Preschoolers
Computational thinking skills and coding literacy will be critical to our children’s success in the future workforce. Join us to explore how to support the development of precoding skills as preschool children engage in play-based learning experiences. Participants will gain understanding of the need for early exposure to precoding experiences, components and benefits of computational thinking, and ways to embed developmentally appropriate precoding activities into preschool curriculum using everyday materials and without increasing screen time. Attendees will participate in examples of activities and useful handouts will be provided.


Joanna Doyle

Director of Training and Education, Clarendon Early Education Services, Inc.

Rosemary Hernandez

Western Regional Director, Clarendon Early Education Services, Inc.

Wednesday November 14, 2018 9:45am - 10:35am
Grand Ballroom North


STEM4Girls: Hands-on Experience to Engage 3rd-8th Grade Girls in STEM
In this session we talk about the STEM4Girls program, which is a one-day experience at UMass Dartmouth in which girls in grades 3-8 spend the day on campus engaged in STEM activities and talking to STEM professionals. In this session, we will talk about the design of the program and findings from our surveys. We will talk about the structure of the event, approaches that have worked, building partnerships with faculty from across the University as well as local teachers, enrollment in the program, and the design of activities for the participants. We will include testimonials about what STEM4Girls has meant to different stakeholders ranging from the girls who participate, the volunteer college students and the workshop leaders. Then, we will have open discussion with all participants about creating these experiences elsewhere in the Commonwealth.


Shakhnoza Kayumova

Assistant Professor, Kaput Center for Research & Innovation in STEM Education at UMass Dartmouth

Chandra Orrill

Director, Kaput Center for Research & Innovation in STEM Education at UMass Dartmouth

Stephen Witzig

Associate Professor, Kaput Center for Research & Innovation in STEM Education at UMass Dartmouth

Wednesday November 14, 2018 9:45am - 10:35am
Grand Ballroom South


Tech Apprentice: 10 Years of Learning to Inform Employer Engagement
Through Tech Apprentice, the Boston Private Industry Council has focused on IT/tech internships as a subset of its overall Youth Summer Employment Program in partnership with the Mayor and the Boston Public Schools for over 10 years. In 2017 the PIC sought to understand how these very early pipeline efforts where impacting the future labor force and how programming and systemic work might evolve to meet the demand for greater scale, preparation and diversity in the tech workforce. This panel presentation and discussion will focus on:
  • Approaches for employer engagement and relationship cultivation;
  • More about the Tech Apprentice Signal Success curriculum and its potential for talent outreach, identification, and preparation;
  • What employers can do to be receptive environments for aspiring technologists;
  • Increasing student diversity through alignment with career and technical education pathways.


Alysia Ordway

Employer Engagement Director, Boston Private Industry Council


Jennifer Applebaum

Director of Youth Employment, Curriculum & Training, Youth Pathways, Commonwealth Corporation

Bea Mitchell

Director, Technology, DTCC

Olivia Paquette

Senior Career Specialist, Charlestown High School, Boston Private Industry Council

Bruce Stephen

Employer Engagement Director, Boston Private Industry Council

Michelle Sylvaria

Executive Director of Career and Technical Education High Schools, Boston Public Schools

Wednesday November 14, 2018 9:45am - 10:35am
Meeting Room D


Closing the Digital Equity Gap: Ensuring Every Student’s Access to Technology Jobs
Participants in this interactive session will be guided through a Digital Equity Walk presenting data in an accessible way, using tools such as Tableau Public, for all to visualize and understand the gender, racial and socioeconomic disparities that exist. Audience members will explore the data individually before collectively discussing implications and identifying solutions to address inequities and improve outcomes. As participants walk and absorb the data, they will respond to the information they find most compelling.

This session will ask participants to reflect on current efforts to expand access to computer science study, where they are being introduced and how to address the fact that in 2016 only 13% of Massachusetts high school students participated in a computer science course and less than 1% took the AP Computer Science exam. Of the 1,151 test takers, 321 were female, 65 were Black, 80 were Hispanic, and 150 were low-income.

Attendees will leave with tangible solutions they can implement and advocate for in their communities to create a pipeline for ALL students to jobs that are now the #1 source of new wages in the country. Participation does not require prior experience with data and is geared toward all audiences.


Jackney Prioly Joseph

Director, Career Readiness Initiatives, Massachusetts Business Alliance for Education


Milton Irving

Executive Director, Timothy Smith Network

Aimee Sprung

Civic Engagement Manager, Microsoft New England Research & Development Center

Wednesday November 14, 2018 10:55am - 11:45am
Grand Ballroom North


The Flipped Internship: A New Partnership Strategy between Technology Companies and High Schools
High School Internships in technology companies are difficult to find. As a result, students often miss out on opportunities to learn, first-hand, about careers in technology. To solve this problem, MITRE and Burlington High School (BHS) collaborated and created a new strategy to provide High School Seniors with technology and career-related experiences in the “Flipped Internship.” Students were given an opportunity to propose and complete a career-related project while remaining in school. Industry mentors met with students once a week, and introduced them to software development methodologies such as Agile and Scrum, development tools like GitHub and Trello, emerging fields like Cybersecurity, and new software development platforms. Additionally, using technologies like Trello and Github enabled both teachers and off-site mentors to have insights into student progress and obstacles. Because the interns remained in the classroom, a large number of students were able to participate and work as colleagues, supporting and learning from each other. Weekly Mentor meetings were scheduled during lunch, and MITRE employees from different departments were able to meet and traveled together, creating a sustained engagement with the school that offered employees both structure and flexibility. Two lead engineers from MITRE’s NextUp group and two computer science teachers from Burlington High School will describe their experiences, share lessons learned, and provide a framework for other schools and businesses who would like to use this model.


Emily Holt

Cyber Security Engineer, MITRE

Dylan Phelan

Visualization and Computer Graphics Software Engineer, MITRE

Shereen Tyrrell

Computer Science Teacher, Burlington High School

LeRoy Wong

Student Help Desk Instructor and Instructional Technology Specialist, Burlington Public Schools

Wednesday November 14, 2018 10:55am - 11:45am
Meeting Room A


The Pipeline Doesn’t End: Developing a Sustainable Culture of Digital Literacy in the Workplace
Given the theme of “Pipelines to Prosperity” and the importance of cultivating ongoing practices - as opposed to one-time check-off-the-box-and-it’s-done initiatives – we explore some workplace-tested ideas regarding “what works” based on notions of learning as situated in communities of practice (Lave & Wenger, 1991). To turn these theoretical insights into specific actionable programs, we offer an example of blockchain technology which demonstrates the importance of cultivating agile, diverse, entrepreneurial organizations capable of navigating future landscapes in which learning is a lifelong endeavor. To explore how businesses can reimagine their role in broadening participation in digital literacy initiatives, we draw upon insights garnered from the anthropological lens of “figured worlds” (Holland, Lachicotte, Skinner, and Chain, 1998). This session prepares employers of all sizes to leverage the latest research findings to implement digital literacy practices not only for “knowledge workers,” but for all workers. While Massachusetts is known internationally as a hub of technological innovation, many who hail from historically non-dominant communities, e.g. females, Latinx, Black and Brown individuals, and English Learners (ELs), are underrepresented in industries that require STEM knowledge and skills (Landivar, 2013).The reasons for this are myriad: access to resources is often not enough; successful efforts must also address issues related to identity, i.e. not seeing oneself as a “science person” (Carlone, 2004); the “problematic pipeline” (Chapa & De La Rosa, 2006); and sociopolitical practices that embrace deficiency viewpoints (Gutiérrez, 2013). We frame workplace digital literacy initiatives as one way to improve communication, collaboration, innovation, and actualize increased prosperity for all.


Nicole Butts

PhD Student, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth STEM Education

Suzanne Cardello

PhD Student, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth STEM Education

Semiha Gun-Yildez

PhD Student, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth STEM Education

Wednesday November 14, 2018 10:55am - 11:45am
Conference Room 210


Amp It UP! Industry Driven Lessons
The AMP IT UP program is an industry, school, and agency program that provides a day-long mini-externship to STEM teachers in local companies. Teachers observe how the math and science skills that they teach under the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks are applied in the day-to-day activities of these companies. The program includes professional development sequence that embeds the field experience into a resulting lesson extension. As a result, hundreds of students in math, science and engineering classes throughout the north shore are learning about local high tech companies, STEM careers and the importance of mathematics, science and engineering practices.

We will share the professional development model, lesson plan templates and resources developed. Additionally, lesson extension samples will be shared with the group.


Katie Crowder

Manager of Youth WD Programs, North Shore Workforce Investment Board

Mary Sarris

Executive Director, North Shore Workforce Investment Board

Christine Shaw

Professional Development Leader, Merrimack College

Wednesday November 14, 2018 1:45pm - 2:35pm
Grand Ballroom Center


Beauty and Joy of Computing: A CS Principles Course
Computer science (CS) has been a field dominated by White and Asian men, but the educational community is actively seeking to engage and support female, Black and Latino students in rigorous high school computer science and prepare them for CS in college and the workforce. Come see how the College Board-endorsed AP curriculum Beauty and Joy of Computing (BJC) is teaching students how to program and how technology impacts society using cross-subject-area projects in a visual programming language and collaborative and student-led class discussions on current events. You will collaboratively explore a hands-on introduction to programming with the Snap! language and learn about the AP Computer Science Principles course, the BJC curriculum, and our ongoing research in urban schools. We’ll answer your questions about implementing this free course, the Snap! programming language, and the equity-focused research project, and leave you inspired to explore the Beauty and Joy of Computing with your students. Participants do not need any experience with programming but should bring an Internet-enabled device.


Mary Fries

Senior Curriculum and Instructional Design Associate, Education Development Center, Inc.

Wednesday November 14, 2018 1:45pm - 2:35pm
Grand Ballroom North


EcoMOD: Blending Computational Modeling and Virtual Worlds for 3rd Grade Ecosystems Science
In recent years, the field of education has challenged researchers and practitioners to incorporate computing as an essential focus of K12 STEM education. Widely recognized as a “basic skill” necessary for economic opportunity and social mobility, integrating computing within K12 STEM supports learners in applying computational thinking while co-developing practices essential to mathematical and scientific expertise. The EcoMOD research project is an example of such an integration. EcoMOD is a 3rd grade science curriculum that blends scientific modeling tasks and computer programming within an immersive virtual ecosystem.

The EcoMOD curriculum interweaves a 3D virtual ecosystem and a visual block-based programming and modeling environment such that the epistemic goals of science are visible to learners. In EcoMOD, students explore an immersive virtual forest ecosystem from multiple perspectives; collecting data, embodying behaviors of focal animals using an immersive point-of-view tool, documenting change caused by the arrival of two keystone species (beavers and woodpeckers), and, finally, developing theories to explain those observed changes. Students test their theories by constructing and refining computational models of the ecosystem. Model outcomes help students link individual organism behaviors to indirect and emergent system level impacts, in turn scaffolding the development of more sophisticated theories regarding the complex causal relationships within the ecosystem.


Amanda Dickes

Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Shari Metcalf

Project Director, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Wednesday November 14, 2018 1:45pm - 2:35pm
Conference Room 210


Motivate Students with Free Innovative STEAM Resources from Public Libraries
The pipeline to prosperity begins with accessing resources your public library offers for free! Students learn better when their learning is supported in the community. STEAM emphasizes collaboration between schools, science organizations, higher education and business to prepare students for STEM jobs. Public libraries are a place where all of these institutions can come together to reach your students and their families. Public libraries have responded to STEAM with a plethora of free materials, kits, robots, programs, clubs, makerspaces and STEAM Centers. Educators for grades K-4 and school librarians will discover innovative resources available at public libraries throughout MA designed to support students, educators, classrooms, out-of-school activities and parent and community involvement. Learn about library resources specifically for K-4 students and for teacher use in the classroom or on a field trip to the library. Find out about library clubs for young coders, Skype programs with NASA, STEAM kits and centers, makerspaces and circulating telescopes. Explore new ways public librarians, school librarians and K-4 educators can form partnerships. MA Library Systems will provide an overview of statewide offerings. Learn about the Needham Free Public Library’s STEAM Center and their partnership with elementary schools, STEAM Professionals and OLIN College of Engineering. There will be a question and answer/discussion session on how educators and public libraries can work together to support parent and community involvement for student motivation and success.


Paula Dugan

Children’s Supervisor, Needham Free Public Library

April Mazza

Youth Services Consultant, MA Library Systems

Nick Tartar

Associate Dean of Student Affairs and PDSO, Olin College of Engineering

Wednesday November 14, 2018 1:45pm - 2:35pm
Meeting Room D


Cybersecurity Education Standards: Partnership Between Industry and Education
Using cybersecurity as an example, this session will examine the relationship between industry and education stakeholders as they developed computer science education standards. The session will follow two threads of conversation: one based on the specifics of cybersecurity and the other focused on the process. This session will examine: 1) how the sub-concept of cybersecurity was elevated to main concept status; 2) how the Standards Committee ensured that the standards include content and skills that were relevant to a fast-changing industry as well as being cognitively appropriate for the designated grade bands and; 3) the process of balancing the needs of industry and education.

The chair of the Rhode Island Computer Education Standards Advisory Committee will moderate a panel composed of a defense industry association education specialist, a high school teacher and a cybersecurity expert. They will discuss how experts in content and experts in pedagogy and educational administration worked together to develop the cybersecurity standards that were endorsed in May 2018 (as part of a larger set of CS standards) by the Rhode Island Board of Education and are currently being implemented.

After a very brief introduction to Computer Science for Rhode Island (CS4RI) and the development of the CS education standards, the panel will discuss the following questions:

  • Why should cybersecurity be a stand-alone core concept in the standards?
  • As risks continually evolve, how can cybersecurity be taught so it is age appropriate and relevant?
  • How are content and/or perspective differences resolved?


Carol M. Giuriceo

Director, Rhode Island STEAM Center @ Rhode Island College


Simon A. Cousins

Principal Client Specialist, FM Global

Linda Larsen

Director of Education Outreach & Workforce Development, Southeastern New England Defense Industry Alliance (SENEDA)

Joe Mazzone

Career and Technical Education Instructor, William M. Davies Jr. Career and Technical High School, Lincoln, Rhode Island

Wednesday November 14, 2018 2:55pm - 3:45pm
Meeting Room C


Integration of Computational Thinking into Math and Science Curriculum Materials
In recognition of the fact that digital literacy and computer science knowledge and skills are rapidly entering the realm of foundational knowledge for all K–12 students, Massachusetts was among the first states in the country to have released Digital Literacy and Computer Science (DLCS) standards. While DLCS competencies are clearly critical for students’ academic and career futures, many educators in the elementary grades will find it challenging to address these standards if they feel they need to add a new subject area to their already jam-packed instructional time.

This session will share the work of one project that is addressing the challenge by integrating standards from the computational thinking DLCS strand into math and science lessons. This project is a collaboration between Education Development Center (EDC), Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), and teachers from 15 school districts throughout the state.

In this session, attendees will get a brief introduction to computational thinking, engage in a computational thinking-rich activity, and have a chance to explore and discuss an integrated science-computational thinking task from one of the project-developed lessons. Anne DeMallie, DESE’s Computer Science and STEM Integration Specialist, will be on hand to discuss the DLCS standards and their implementation with attendees.


Marian Pasquale

Senior Research Scientist, Education Development Center (EDC)


Anne DeMallie

Computer Science and STEM Integration Specialist, MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

Kristine Thayer

Teacher (Grade 3), Glenwood Elementary School, Rutland, MA

Kevin Waterman

Project Director, Education Development Center (EDC)

Wednesday November 14, 2018 2:55pm - 3:45pm
Grand Ballroom South


Robots and Screen-Free Coding for Your Youngest Learners — Come Play With KIBO!
Come play with the KIBO robot! Get hands-on with this screen-free coding and robotics kit for children in K-2 classrooms, while you hear ideas for integrating these activities within existing curriculum. We’ll share how easy it is to integrate robotics within the classroom to engage young students to learn STEAM concepts. Using K-2 classroom examples, like our first-grade students using robotics to drive home science learning initiatives, such as wind and weather instruction. Barbara Tennyson, an experienced STEM teacher and technology integrator, will share examples of using robotics to support in-class curriculum as well as meet computer science and digital literacy standards. Learn how to incorporate robotics into your existing classroom instruction to emphasize lessons with hands-on play!


Jason Innes

Manager of Training and Curriculum Development, KinderLab Robotics, Inc.

Barbara Tennyson

Instructional Technology Specialist, Needham Public Schools

Wednesday November 14, 2018 2:55pm - 3:45pm
Gran Ballroom North