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CIS Offers Computer Science Workshop for Teachers

CIS Offers Computer Science Workshop for Teachers

Posted: June 25, 2013

For the second year, the Computer Information Systems (CIS) Department is offering a free workshop for area high school teachers to promote computer science in the classroom and serve as a recruiting tool for future students.

Computer Science for High School (CS4HS), June 26–28, provides an overview of computer programming, web design, and problem-solving exercises for teachers of math, science, technology, and computer science from 23 public and private high schools in Erie, Niagara, and Monroe counties.

A grant from computer search engine giant Google is funding the workshop that will take place from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each day in E. H. Butler Library.

“Most high schools don’t offer actual computer science courses,” said CS4HS coordinator and associate professor of CIS Sarbani Banerjee. This is why, she said, it’s crucial to connect with teachers and encourage them to integrate computer concepts that reinforce science, technology, engineering, and mathematics initiatives into their curriculums.

“We’re trying to broaden participation in computer science. At the end of the workshop, we’ll be asking teachers to start computer clubs in their schools,” Banerjee said. “We also want to give them a familiarity with what we offer here at Buffalo State.”

Additionally, all of the teachers who attended CS4HS last year have been invited to participate in parallel sessions June 27 and 28 that offer more advanced computer concepts such as programming mobile applications, Python programming, and robotics.

Along with Banerjee, CIS faculty members Ramona Santa Maria, Barbara Sherman, and Neal Mazur will lead sessions in computer science concepts, as well as content-specific sessions with hands-on tutorials.

The connection with teachers won’t end this week. The organizers will hold a follow-up workshop in the fall and a reunion in the spring to discuss the teachers’ successes and challenges.

Also in late spring, participating CIS faculty will host a computer science showcase and competition for the students of the teachers who complete the CS4HS program.

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