South Orangetown Central School District

Once again, South Orangetown schools took part in Computer Science Education Week, an annual program dedicated to inspiring K-12 students to take an interest in computer science for career and learning exploration. Through CSEdWeek, participating schools and organizations aim to spark student interest in technology careers and learn skills to compete in the increasingly tech-driven global economy.

Here are a few SOCSD highlights:

Tappan Zee High School Computer Science Club members led an Hour of Code activity for SOMS Challenge Lab students on December 12. Middle school students competed in a quiz-style game that tested their knowledge of the internet, computer networks and databases.
“It’s great to have former Challenge Lab students come back to teach younger students,” said Enrichment and Technology teacher Andrew McIntosh. “It’s encouraging to see where they are now and how much their interest in tech has grown.”

At Cottage Lane Elementary School, Technology teacher Jacob Tanenbaum engaged in a hands-on approach to the Hour of Code. Fifth-grade students used the Scratch programming language to code a race that used their own heart rate sensor data to power characters on the screen. “The exercise combines physicality with technology,” Tanenbaum explained. “We need to understand how technology applies to the real world and not just focus on the tech alone.”

William O. Schaefer Elementary School Technology teacher Randi Nerkizian logged kindergartners onto to play fun, free games designed to build pattern recognition skills, which are strongly tied to programming. “Students get to experiment in a low-risk environment where making mistakes will help them to be more successful in the future,” Nerkizian noted.

Computer Science Education Week Challenge Lab Lesson