Anchor code: Modularity as Evidence of Conceptual Learning and Computational Practices of Students Using a Code-First Environment.

Aditi Wagh, Michael Horn, Sharona Levy , Yu Guo, Corey Brady, Uriel J Wilensky

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

In response to increasing calls to include computational thinking (CT) in K-12 education, some researchers have argued for integrating science learning and CT. In that vein, this paper investigates conceptual learning and computational practices through the use of a code-first modeling environment called Frog Pond in a middle school classroom. The environment was designed to enable learners to explore models of evolutionary shifts through domain–specific agent-based visual programming. It was implemented as a curricular unit in seventh grade science class. We analyzed video and log data of two contrasting student pairs. This paper presents one of our findings: Development of modular core functional code–units or what we call anchor code. Anchor code is a body of code that creates a stable base from which further explorations take place. We argue that anchor code is evidence for conceptual learning and computational practices.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 12th International Conference on Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL 2017)
EditorsBrian K Smith, Marcela Borge, Emma Mercier, Kyu Yon Lim
Pages656-659
Number of pages4
Volume2
StatePublished - 2017

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