CS Pathways is a 20-hour introductory computer science curriculum for middle school which builds digital literacy skills as a pathway into computer science. It is based on having students design mobile apps for social good. The curriculum was developed with NSF funding in a collaboration with teachers in Everett and Medford, MA, and is intended to be integrated into technology, engineering, science, math, library, or art courses.

During the first project year, a reference curriculum was prepared by teachers Denise Salemi and Dawn Munro, both technology teachers in the Everett School district. This curriculum was shared with teachers joining the project in subsequent years.

Denise retired from teaching after the project’s second year. A dissemination version of the curriculum is based on Dawn’s continued work.

It consists of approximately 15 lessons covering 20 hours of classroom content. Lessons are tied to MA state technology and the 2016 Digital Literacy and Computer Science standards, as well as the 2011 CSTA K-12 Standards.

Below is a summary of the lesson plans, a PDF containing the full set of lessons, and a link to set of handouts and other resources prepared by project teachers.

 Sequence  What We Did
1 Overview and permission form distribution
2 Partnerships
3 Apps and giving computer instructions
4 Tablet and file basics
5 Meow app and intro to computer science
6 Using App Inventor
7 Brainstorming app ideas
8 Technology breaking down barriers in careers
9 Analyzing CS professionals’ careers
10 Beginner “Talk To Me” app
11 Downloaded media into apps (Virtual Symphony)
12 Other tutorial apps: Ball Bounce, Digital Doodle
13 if/then/else with MLK starter app
14 CS professional guest visitor
15 Writing proposals for final apps
16 App creation mini-sessions
17 Showcase

CS Pathways curriculum Munro-Salemi

Classroom handouts and other resources