Skyline Middle School is proud to partner with Missouri State University with integrating the CODERS (Computer Science Opportunities, Development, and Education in Rural Schools) project into their middle school classrooms. The CODERS project began with a cross-curricular group of MSU faculty writing a $4 million dollar grant to help serve rural schools. The CODERS staff at Missouri State University consists of 7 full-time faculty with PhD’s in their respective fields, including computer science, mathematics, and writing. Skyline Middle School was contacted in the spring of 2021 to become a part of the project and classroom integration began this fall.
The goal of the project is to expose students to new computer science opportunities and coding across many different instructional disciplines. Skyline Middle School is currently incorporating CODERS through its science curriculum in grades 5-8. Mrs. Kali Howe and Mrs. Brenda Thompson (Skyline Middle School science teachers) both received intense 1 week training this summer in introducing the curriculum and teaching with the new devices provided by Missouri State University. Students will be supplied with a Raspberry Pi 4 starter kit to learn the basics of computer coding and will learn how to code basic computer programs.
Missouri State University is offering continued support and training through the 3 years of the project. On October 8, Dr. Martinez and her team of CODERS visited Skyline Middle School to visit with students and offer further training to staff. Dr. Martinez focused on logistical and computational thinking and helped introduce the students to the basics of computer coding. Through the use of an application called SCRATCH, students were able to begin building a virtual world populated by their own code and sprites.