Professional Development Workshops

Tuesday, July 12, 10am-12pm

Accessibility for All: Teaching Accessibility via Games

Hosted by Devorah Kletenik & Rachel Adler

We will teach participants about accessibility — designing software for ease of use by people with disabilities. At its core, accessibility is not about the technical concepts in software creation. It is about empathy for people with disabilities and understanding the challenges that they often encounter when using software. To help motivate this understanding, we created a series of games that teach about accessibility through simulating disabilities, both with and without accessible software design. Our games do not require background knowledge and so are suitable for those new to the topics, and to CS. Survey results show that they increase student empathy and inclusion of people with disabilities in design decisions. The games are also suitable for use in K-12 classrooms; they have already been incorporated in a K-12 teacher’s education class and are currently being piloted in K-12 schools.

Tuesday, July 12, 2pm-4pm

Microworlds & Mathematics: Integrating Programming into Elementary Math Classes

Hosted by June Mark, Kate Coleman, and Zak Kolar

The Math+C project at Education Development Center (EDC) is developing microworlds that integrate programming into elementary mathematics as a language to help children express and explore mathematical ideas. Our broad hypothesis is that programming, suitably designed, can change how children learn mathematics and help to develop and reveal children’s computational thinking (in particular, abstraction, precision of specification, and algorithm). Embedding programming into the core mathematics instruction for grades 2–5 ensures that all children gain experience with programming, in developmentally appropriate ways – and it increases access to mathematical ideas by providing an engaging approach to learning critical mathematics content that offers different affordances than pencil-and-paper activities. Participants will experience working in the microworlds solving puzzles that are suitable for young children and will see how programming by young students can support their mathematical learning. Participants will discuss how these resources may be used in teacher education. All materials that will be used or described are available free.

Wednesday, July 13, 9:30am-12pm

Engaging Neurodiverse Learners Through Technology

Hosted by Haley Shibble &  Ray Barash

How do you teach neurodiverse students computer science principles and technology skills? The answer is through a combination of pedagogies including: Universal Design for Learning, Explicit Instruction, Social-Emotional Learning, Affinity Based Programming, Multi-Modal Instruction and more. In this workshop, participants will learn that the key to understanding difficult content is through the lens of how you engage the learner; the neurodiverse student must be provided with multiple ways to access knowledge. The workshop will focus specifically on Universal Design for Learning, the methodology which gives students an equal opportunity to succeed by providing flexibility in the ways students access material, engage with knowledge and demonstrate what they have learned. 

Wednesday, July 13, 2-4pm

Privacy and Pedagogy: Resisting Data Collection and Algorithmic Biases

Hosted by Junior Tidal

This workshop will provide participants with a basic understanding of digital privacy concerns. They will learn how digital privacy literacy is an essential component to contemporary information literacy practices, critical thinking, and research. Participants will learn three what privacy is, the five w’s and 1 h of data collection, and tools that they can be used to protect their privacy. In addition, they will learn how private data can be weaponized, can create mis/disinformation reinforces white supremacy, and upholds oppressive practices. The intent of the workshop is to be as interactive as possible, where the facilitator will spur discussion around privacy issues. The primary focus will be online platforms, such as social media, search engines, and library-based electronic resources. 

Thursday, July 14, 10am-12pm

Let Me Count the Ways! Why and How to Embed Computer Science in ELA and Literacy Methods Courses

Hosted by Tom Lynch

In this workshop, participants will explore how to deepen and expand the teaching of English by using key concepts and methods from computer science (CS). Why CS in ELA class? Fundamentally, CS is about languages–letters and numbers. (Think about “coding,” for example; it’s just writing.) The relationship between language and CS gets lost in K-12 schools and districts where STEM subjects receive most of the attention. In fact, CS methods and concepts have been used in post-graduate English programs for decades. This workshop will help participants translate CS concepts and methods that, at most, have made their way to university digital humanities programs for K-12 ELA classrooms. 

Tuesday, July 19, 10am-12pm

CANCELLED: Think to Scale, Scaling to Think

Hosted by Gaelen Hadlett

This workshop teaches educators the importance of thinking about scale as a computational thinking skill. Participants will learn how zooming in and out of situations can provide important details or abstract away unnecessary information. They will practice this using a nature-based science and art activity, a digital art activity, and explore how the skill can be used in literacy. To help bridge scaling in computation thinking with computing, the workshop also gives a practical lesson on CPU’s and silicon. It is a workshop based on lessons in K-5 classrooms.

Tuesday, July 19, 2pm-4pm

Programming, Student Agency, and Creating Computational Artifacts with Scratch

Hosted by Carlos Leon

BootUp’s workshop will provide participants with a hands-on introduction to computer programming and computational thinking using Scratch, a block-based language created at MIT. Additionally, the facilitator will guide participants in how to best utilize BootUp’s free K-5 curriculum to support current or future elementary school educators in teaching computer science in a manner that promotes student agency, personalization, and problem-solving. BootUp has been providing professional development to in-service NYC DOE educators since 2017 and is currently working directly with districts in Queens and Brooklyn to train at least two teachers per school building on BootUp’s curriculum. Participants will spend ninety minutes creating computational artifacts and thirty minutes discussing and exploring curricular materials. 

Wednesday, July 20, 10am-12pm

We are AI: Taking Control of Technology

Hosted by Julia Stoyanovich

The course aims to introduce participants to the basics of AI and its social impacts.  It weaves together data and technical literacy with topics in AI ethics.  The course is structured as a learning circle, a peer-learning modality.  It’s made up of 5 modules, each corresponding to 90 minutes of learning.  This course has been piloted online and in-person to QPL patrons in Spring 2022.  It does not require a background in computing or in mathematics.  Course materials include a website that can be used for self-guided or facilitated learning (, a comic book series that serves as supplementary reading (, currently available in English and in Spanish, both electronically and in printed form), a series of short instructional videos, group and individual activities, and an instructor/facilitator guide.  

Wednesday, July 20, 2pm-4pm

Data Science in Communities

Split Breakout Workshops, hosted by David Stokes and Cherise McBride & Kathryn Lanouette, Victor Lee, and Sarah Van Wart

In this session, each set of presenters will give an elevator pitch on their workshop, and you will the opportunity to decide which you want to explore within breakout rooms.

Writing Data Stories (Hosted by David Stokes & Cherise McBride): There are plenty of opportunities across the curriculum (e.g., science, math, social studies) to teach students how to interrogate data and understand how stories can be told with data. The Writing Data Stories project has developed strategies, tools and lessons that can be easily integrated into classroom practices. Join us in this webinar to learn more about approaches to building data fluency that combine some of the best strategies in helping students learn about socioscientific issues and statistics concepts using literacy and equity-minded practices. We will share example classroom activities that include making sense of graphs used in media and investigating data with the free online data tool, CODAP. The lessons are applicable to teachers in middle and high school. Participants will gain access to our free classroom-ready materials.

Getting Local with Data: K-8 Collaborations/Approaches to Interweaving Data into Learning about Science and Math (Hosted by Kathryn Lanouette, Victor Lee and Sarah Van Wart): In this workshop, participants will learn about two K-8 projects between researchers, teachers and public schools that supported students learning with and about data in science and mathematics classes, leveraging local community spaces and playgrounds as the basis for these data-intensive inquiries. Participants will learn about processes for developing interdisciplinary curriculum centering local spaces, useful digital technologies and applicable pedagogical approaches that support ambitious and equitable learning. Following the 2 hour workshop, participants will have the opportunity later in the week to meet in small groups to share and get feedback on their own approaches to integrating locally-based data learning opportunities for their students.

Thursday, July 21st, 9am-11:30am

Computational Thinking with Scratch (Conference Presentation)

Hosted by Francisco Cervantes

For this session, participants will need to register for the Scratch Conference here. Participants are welcome to join for the entire day, beyond 9am-11:30am, but Cervantes will be offering a CITE-specific workshop on July 29th for those who are interested in taking a deeper dive into Scratch or are unable to attend the conference. See description at the bottom of this page.

Tuesday, July 26, 10am-12pm

Equitable Approaches to Digital Literacy

Hosted by Detra Price-Dennis & Layla Quinones

Over the past few years, we have seen a global uptick of engagement in online spaces with digital tools that have informed how the field of education approaches teaching and learning. Due to COVID-19, more educators are now expanding their instructional strategies to integrate digital tools into their teaching. With this context as our backdrop, this workshop will explore research, tools, and pedagogical practices that can inform equity-oriented approaches to digital literacies.

Tuesday, July 26, 2pm-4pm

K12 Equitable CS: Practices, Implementation, and a Vision for the Future

Hosted by Shana White & Frieda McAlear

While much of the focus on broadening participation in computer science efforts has centered around increasing access to courses, access alone is insufficient and significant disparities remain. We believe that a multi-pronged approach centering racial justice is required to ensure meaningful participation, success, and matriculation in computer science education for students from all demographic backgrounds to close racial, gender, and socioeconomic equity gaps. This approach must address foundational educational disparities, create equitable policies at the federal, state, and local levels, and invest deeply in the development of teachers’ pedagogical practices, and curricula that reflect and sustain students’ cultures, experiences, and interests. This panel aims to share data as well as personal experiences with Black and Native students in K12 computer science education, their classrooms, and their communities. This panel also plans to share potential ideas and implementation pilots we have deployed to truly create equitable computer science education at the K12 level that is culturally relevant and inclusive of historically marginalized students, especially Black and Native American student groups.

Wednesday, July 27, 10am-12pm

Civic Engagement in the Digital Age: Common Sense Resources

Hosted by Tali Horowitz

The ubiquity of media and technology in our lives has come with far-reaching implications: a culture of cynicism, disagreement over facts, increased incivility and a rise in hate speech, resulting in a deterioration of civic engagement. Despite these challenges, we also have a generation of young people who are energized and ready to be more civically engaged than our country has seen in a long time, eager to leverage the power of technology for good.  While digital media has the power to inspire others to act, most young people are not equipped with the knowledge, skills, and habits to participate in meaningful ways. Join Common Sense to explore developing lessons and resources that engage with students on the role digital media plays in their civic life, its affordances providing them a way to be heard, join together, and work for change.

Wednesday, July 27, 2-4pm

Scientific Simulations and Agent-Based Models with StarLogo Nova

Hosted by Gabrielle Rabinowitz

This workshop will introduce participants to a free online scientific modeling tool called StarLogo Nova. With StarLogo Nova, students in grades 6+ can modify, and create their own agent-based models to study scientific phenomena like ecosystems and chemical reactions. Participants will have an opportunity to explore a simple ecosystem model, examine the block-based code that makes the model run, and use the model to test a scientific hypothesis. The facilitator will share specific pedagogical techniques for using StarLogo Nova to teach core computational thinking skills such as abstraction, automation, and analysis and will draw connections to NGSS standards. Finally, participants will play an “unplugged” game that reinforces the computational modeling concepts they learned. Participants will leave with a set of free, remix-able scientific models, with an understanding of how to use them to teach computational thinking and scientific modeling.

Thursday, July 28th, 10am-11am

Let Me Count the Ways, Part 2

Hosted by Tom Liam Lynch

This special session will build upon the “Let Me Count the Ways” workshop, introducing participants to new concepts and practices from CS/CT that deepen and expand ELA and literacy pedagogy. Participants will explore the concept algorithm as it relates to emulating authors’ writing style. In addition, participants will explore literary data manipulation and visualization practices using Google Sheets, including the development of simple topic models and correlation coefficients to fuel class discussion about texts. Note: Participants of this session should have attended the previous workshop, or have viewed the archived recording.

Friday, July 29th, 10am-11am

Getting Started with Scratch

Hosted by Francisco Cervantes

Getting Started with Scratch Sessions invite educators and caregivers to learn more about the Scratch platform, online community, and ways Scratch is used by young people around the world. Come ready to engage in a playful introduction to this free creative coding platform, and leave with resources to support the next steps in your Scratch journey!

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