Computer Science Week is Back!

What do Grace Hopper, Ada Lovelace, Alan Turing, Dorothy Vaughn, and Mae Jemison have in common? All of these scientists are being featured this week as part of Computer Science Week at TDS, an event orchestrated by our masterful Director of Technology, Melissa Cabrera, that brings artificial intelligence, gaming, robotics, web design, coding languages, and so much more to life for our students.

The origins of Computer Science Week at TDS date back five years, when Ms. Cabrera pulled our school into the Hour of Code, a worldwide movement to teach coding during a particular week in December. Participation in the Hour of Code remains our main event this year, with students in all ten grades learning the art and science of coding through hands-on experiences. This year, 4th and 5th graders are exploring the Javascript language, and middle schoolers are tinkering with Python. All students are learning about famous scientists during homeroom and class meeting time.

This year’s Computer Science Week theme also incorporates social justice. Sharing some examples during school meeting of shortcomings in the CS world – Siri and Alexa have trouble understanding certain dialects or accents that differ from native English; facial recognition is often less accurate in reading people with darker complexions – Ms. Cabrera highlighted the importance of adhering to the principles outlined in the TDS Statement of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion when making advances in these domains. This begins with making computer science available to everyone, something that Ms. Cabrera and others have worked diligently to achieve this week.

Computer Science Week fits nicely with our commitment to STEM education at TDS. I look forward to highlighting more of our programming in this area – including Science Olympiad, Science Expo, Odyssey of the Mind, Math Week, and more – in the months ahead.

Doug Norry
Head of School