Week 3 Response

       Throughout his video, Papert discusses his ideas and thoughts when it comes to teaching. I enjoyed watching the video and hearing Papert convey his ideas through connections to learning. Through a descriptive explanation of Turtle Graphics, Papert emphasizes how computer programming influences students to problem-solve and make connections to how their own bodies move. By changing the instructions and recognizing the cause and effect between the instructions and the movement of the turtle, students will understand why the turtle is moving a certain way. In every subject area, it is essential to connect lessons to students’ lives in order to motivate them and make them see the value in what they’re doing. Papert discusses this as he emphasizes “personalizing learning”. Papert states that the importance of Logo is focusing on learning “through computers to have better understanding of everything else, including yourself”. This is what we are trying to put into practice in schools today with relation to computer programming. Computer programming should be seamlessly integrated into all content subject areas in order to aid students in understanding different ideas and concepts. An example of this in my internship is that I am integrating Scratch Jr. into the English component of the second-grade by having them first storyboard and write a fairytale of their choice and then bring the story to life using Scratch Jr. 

       The reading “Climbing to Understanding: Lessons from an Experimental Learning Environment for Adjudicated Youth” was a great read and a great study. Through the analysis of the group of students discussed, Papert’s belief that we need to adapt learning environments in order to motivate students and make their learning experiences valuable to them was demonstrated. This is something I put into practice with my teaching. Specifically, while teaching math I always created word problems using background information that appealed to the interests of the students in my class such as sports, shopping, etc. As Papert discussed throughout his study, I make projects meaningful for students by, for example, asking them to bring in receipts from their favorite restaurants in order to analyze instead of simply reading off definitions of tip, tax and gratuity. Throughout the study, Papert emphasizes that “we were trying to make a more fundamental change on the design and construction of personally meaningful projects determined by the learners and not pre-set by others, by allowing extended periods of time for depth and robustness of exploration….” (120). Students were given the opportunity to construct their own learning and had a say in their learning process, through the integration of technology into the curriculum. Students such as Michael, benefit from hands-on, meaningful projects as they are able to understand why they are doing something and see the benefit in "learning by doing".

       Papert states in “Mindstorms” that: “in my vision, the child programs the computer and, in doing so, both acquires a sense of mastery over a piece of the most modern and powerful technology and establishes an intimate contact with some of the deepest ideas from science, from mathematics, and from the art of intellectual model building” (5). It is what the child does with the computer that enhances their learning, not simply the presence of using a computer that makes a difference. Through the readings and the video, Papert is saying that we need to make learning experiences meaningful and valuable to students by connecting lessons to their lives and that students learn more through “doing”.

       As a teacher, I will incorporate Papert’s ideas into my work by creating meaningful projects for students to work on and by giving them opportunities to choose the best project that works for them based upon their interests and strengths. I will integrate technology seamlessly into the curriculum by allowing students to use any form of technology they would like, while also introducing them to various forms as a guideline for them. I will give students opportunities to be creative and time to discover new things, instead of always asking them to complete the same step-by-step procedures. I’ve seen many of Papert’s ideas put into practice in the school I am interning in and I am looking forward to integrate his ideas into my own teaching!

    • Gerald Ardito
      Gerald Ardito


      I really enjoyed reading your response.

      You did an excellent job supporting your arguments with evidence from the text as well as made connections with your own practice.


    Computer Science for Teachers Spring 2018

    Computer Science for Teachers Spring 2018

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