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Recommendations to Support Computational Thinking in the Elementary Classroom

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Technology and Engineering Teacher Volume 77, Number 4, ISSN 2158-0502


Computational thinking is an important and necessary way of thinking for computer programmers and other professionals in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Research on emerging practices around computational thinking that is developed through coding initiatives in schools reports that elementary children typically learn how to operate technologies rather than learn how to develop new technologies (Israel, et al., 2015). As a result, students in elementary schools experience only the receiving end of technology (Burke & Kafai, 2014). This lack of production potentially limits the effectiveness of technology integration since early experiences with computational thinking as a means of problem solving in abstract ways has the potential to improve attitudes, engage students, and enhance programing skills (Israel, et al., 2015). Thus, it is important to provide students with early exposure to computational thinking. Yet, with so many apps and so little guidance, it can be difficult to know how to integrate these apps into classroom instruction. Therefore, the purpose of this article is to provide recommendations for teachers, drawn from research, on how to select apps and begin practices that support computational thinking.


Estapa, A., Hutchison, A. & Nadolny, L. (2018). Recommendations to Support Computational Thinking in the Elementary Classroom. Technology and Engineering Teacher, 77(4), 25-29. Retrieved June 26, 2019 from .

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