Public Discussion

  • Icon for: Elc Estrera

    Elc Estrera

    Facilitator
    May 16, 2016 | 06:17 p.m.

    This looks like a great program insofar as it encourages the discovery of connections between computer programming and solutions to social justice issues, which doesn’t appear to be emphasized enough in general.

    It looks like high school or college students work with program staff in the museum and help teach classes. Can you clarify who all is involved in the program and how they benefit?

  • Icon for: Shona Ramchandani

    Shona Ramchandani

    Presenter
    May 17, 2016 | 12:57 p.m.

    Thanks for your comment, Elc! We are very excited about our STEM Justice framework. This is a high school youth program, and the high schoolers teach kindergarteners about food justice. They have also taught adults in our partner non-profits! Our goal is to have our youth move from being learners to teachers and eventually to leaders in their own communities. We are also a pathway program, so youth hear about the crew in middle school, can get on the crew in high school, and then can move on to become interns, project assistants and hopefully to some day lead a crew themselves…

  • Icon for: Elc Estrera

    Elc Estrera

    Facilitator
    May 17, 2016 | 03:59 p.m.

    Very cool! It sounds like youths who are interested have a lot of opportunities throughout their school years to get involved.

  • Icon for: Nicole Reitz-Larsen

    Nicole Reitz-Larsen

    Facilitator
    May 18, 2016 | 02:04 a.m.

    I really enjoyed watching the students learn about science and cs at the same time in engaging activities where they were able to use their communication skills to talk with people their age and younger. I thing that allowing students the opportunity to share what they are learning with others and taking on the responsibility associated with that is a great way to empower the students is a positive way.

    I’d love to hear what apps the students plan on making to work with those in the community.

    Is this a free after school program o does it cost extra money? I’d also be interested to hear if the students have been able to find ways find themselves being part of the cs movement and working with others.

    What kinds of activities are they doing with the younger students? How long do you plan to scale this type of program?

    I’d be interested to find out whether or not students go on to take cs courses in college.

    Also what kind of feed back are you getting from schools where students are part of the program. What if any positive outcomes have their science or other teachers noticed about the students and their critical thinking skill?

  • Icon for: Elc Estrera

    Elc Estrera

    Facilitator
    May 19, 2016 | 12:49 p.m.

    To build on Nicole’s comment, how would you evaluate the impact of this program? In particular, what outcomes would you measure and how would you measure whether the program had an effect on those outcomes?

  • Icon for: Shona Ramchandani

    Shona Ramchandani

    Presenter
    May 23, 2016 | 03:36 p.m.

    Thank you Nicole and Elc….
    Nicole: we actually pay youth to participate, so they are considered employees. We engage a group of advisors who are engaged in computer programming as mentors and bring in guest speakers in the CS field to share their stories with our youth as well. They share information about nutrition and healthy food, as well as demonstrating their hydroponics and composting for younger kids. We do not currently have a plan for evaluating the youth’s long term goals with college, but it is a possibility we have discussed pursuing. We do not study the impact in the schools as we are an after school program and do not have access into the classroom. As for apps, we hope that youth will be designing apps for community partners around food justice.
    Elc: We have an evaluation for youth to study their interest pre- and post- this program in science, food justice, healthy eating, etc. We also use artifacts such as the apps, hydroponic and aquaponic system as tangible evaluation mechanisms.

  • Icon for: Jane Strohm

    Jane Strohm

    Engineering Curriculum Lead
    May 18, 2016 | 12:08 p.m.

    This is a great project using technology and science to address important problems to improve the communities. How are you working to reach a larger audience in your local community? Are you looking to scale up so more youth can participate and work toward addressing other social justice issues?

  • Icon for: Shona Ramchandani

    Shona Ramchandani

    Presenter
    May 23, 2016 | 03:39 p.m.

    Thank you, Jane! We use our advisors to reach a local audience and national audience, as well as our network of community partners to disseminate this work. However, we’d love your insight and suggestions for growing our audience and our scaling. Currently our budget does not allow for that, but at the recent STELAR summit, we learned that there are grants to help us figure out how to scale up or reach more youth, so we are looking at these as well as our partner network as a way to scale up our work.

  • Icon for: Gretal Leibnitz

    Gretal Leibnitz

    Co-PI & Executive Director
    May 18, 2016 | 08:25 p.m.

    FABULOUS! I love the social justice orientation! What a wonderful way to hook young people into connecting science with direct personal and meaningful community application. Kudos to you and your team.

  • Icon for: Shona Ramchandani

    Shona Ramchandani

    Presenter
    May 23, 2016 | 03:41 p.m.

    Thank you, Gretal! We are very excited about this curriculum and pedagogy too :)

  • Icon for: Barbara Ericson

    Barbara Ericson

    Senior Research Scientist
    May 19, 2016 | 03:43 p.m.

    I like how you use the high school students to teach other students. Are you measuring the attitudes of the high school students towards computer science pre and post to see if you increase interest in computer science?

  • Icon for: Shona Ramchandani

    Shona Ramchandani

    Presenter
    May 23, 2016 | 03:42 p.m.

    Yes, we are doing pre- and post- assessment, as well as currently having youth trained in as evaluators for the project, so they can determine how THEY want to do evaluation. They may do videos, artifact creation or peer-to-peer interviews, they will decide! We have an on-site evaluator and an off-site evaluator who are both helping to shape the evaluation plan for the project.

  • Small default profile

    Muneer Karcher-Ramos

    Guest
    May 20, 2016 | 06:30 p.m.

    The Kitty Andersen Youth Science Center marries social justice and STEM in a very striking way. The KAYSC is working with youth of color to transform minds and neighborhoods. Inspiring stuff!

  • Icon for: Shona Ramchandani

    Shona Ramchandani

    Presenter
    May 23, 2016 | 03:44 p.m.

    Thank you, Muneer! We appreciate your support and your partnership!

  • Icon for: Sujata Shetty

    Sujata Shetty

    Associate Professor
    May 22, 2016 | 08:53 a.m.

    I appreciated the effort to connect STEM to social justice, the enthusiasm shown by members the “crew,” and the diversity that seems apparent among participants and organizers. Very inspiring program! Do you have any plans to follow these students long-term?

  • Icon for: Shona Ramchandani

    Shona Ramchandani

    Presenter
    May 23, 2016 | 03:46 p.m.

    Thank you, Sujata! All of the things you mentioned are important components of our program, so I’m glad that came through. Currently we do not have a long term evaluation plan for this project, but we do stay in touch with KAYSC alumni and use self-reports to follow them along their career journeys…

  • Icon for: Emily Stevens

    Emily Stevens

    Executive Producer/ Managing Producer, SciGirls
    May 22, 2016 | 06:59 p.m.

    Love the combo of STEM, CS, social justice, community service, and arts. Terrific to see the older students teaching and role modeling the younger students. Such an effective approach to engage and benefit a broad age range of students.

  • Icon for: Shona Ramchandani

    Shona Ramchandani

    Presenter
    May 23, 2016 | 03:47 p.m.

    Thank you, Emily! We appreciate your positive comments, and are so proud of how the youth in our programs do this work!

  • Icon for: Ann Austin

    Ann Austin

    Professor of Higher Education
    May 23, 2016 | 06:46 p.m.

    I am very pleased to see the connections being made between science and social justice. This is an excellent project!

  • Further posting is closed as the showcase has ended.

  1. Shona Ramchandani
  2. High School Program Manager
  3. Bits-2-Bites: Youth Applying STEM Content and Computational Thinking to Learn about Nutrition and Advocate for Food Justice
  4. http://stelar.edc.org/projects/13501/profile/bits-2-bites-youth-applying-stem-content-and-computational-thinking-learn
  5. Science Museum of Minnesota
  1. Oanh Vu
  2. Crew Manager
  3. Bits-2-Bites: Youth Applying STEM Content and Computational Thinking to Learn about Nutrition and Advocate for Food Justice
  4. http://stelar.edc.org/projects/13501/profile/bits-2-bites-youth-applying-stem-content-and-computational-thinking-learn
  5. Science Museum of Minnesota
Presenters’
Choice

Bits to Bites: De-coding Injustice
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Are you interested in the connections between STEM education and social justice? Watch this video highlighting the Kitty Andersen Youth Science Center’s STEM Justice Framework, which is an innovative approach to applying STEM content to solving a social justice issue. Youth from the Science Museum of Minnesota working on Bits 2 Bites are using computer programming and computational to learn about nutrition and to advocate for food justice.