The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled.
I have the great privilege of helping some very talented young people start to understand their potential and to discover their interest and aptitude for Computing Science.
My students are bright, inquisitive and energetic, and they are ready, willing and able to bring their passion and compassion to the task of improving their neighborhoods, their city and their world.
Most of our students are low-income and earned their spot in our school through hard work and accomplishment; they're continuing on that path to achieve their dreams.
Our school is a great place, full of hardworking, committed teachers who go above and beyond to help students move forward on their paths. We have a diverse student body, and our teachers and staff work to make sure all of our students are not only challenged with meaningful material but are also supported in dealing with the tremendous non-school challenges many of them face.
We're able to provide a wide range of courses and extra-curricular programs that engage and interest our students. In Computer Science we're now successfully attracting more young women and students of color.
With these tablets, students will be able to rapidly and successfully prototype, test, debug and demonstrate their apps. We do computer programming in a variety of contexts, but mobile app development really engages and motivates them at a deeper level.
Whether building apps to improve the school, help students be safer outside of school, improve their time management, or do math or language practice, our students need to be able to put their apps on actual devices for testing, demonstration and deployment.
We'll use these tablets in classroom projects for both my intro classes (where they're use AppInventor to build apps) and my Web Development classes (where they use the web languages and the Adobe PhoneGap utility). Students will also use the tablets in our after-school enrichment programs, and those who are participating in app development contests (e.g., Congressional App Challenge and the Technovation Challenge) will need tablets to test and improve their apps.
I've seen the impact as students come to understand that they can be active players in an industry they might have seemed out of their reach, and that understanding carries over into other areas of their lives.
They start to know that there is almost nothing that is off limits to them, as long as they're willing to put in the time and effort.
A few of our students are fortunate enough to have their own Android device to use, but most do not. My goal is to enable more students to fully participate.
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