Principal Investigators: Gilly Puttick, Eli Tucker-Raymond
The Building Systems from Scratch project will develop and study a education program that integrates computing into middle school Earth systems science by interweaving game design and science learning. More »
Funder: The National Science Foundation
Computing has been a central tool in the development of modern understanding in many fields of science and engineering. Skills such as modeling, data visualization, and computational thinking are all necessary for building a diverse scientific workforce that will secure a strong future for the United States. The Building Systems from Scratch project will develop and study an education program that integrates computing into middle school Earth systems science by interweaving game design and science learning. It aims to develop skills among diverse groups of young people in two crucial fields central to national interest and safety. More importantly, the project brings these two fields together to create a learning environment in which young people learn thinking from a systems perspective, essential to solving complex scientific problems. Specifically, students will engage in computational practices such as modeling, abstraction, management of complexity, and creative design, as well as iterative testing and debugging, as they design their games. The project contributes to practical models for developing science content learning and computer skills, creating positive attitudes toward science, and broadening participation in the sciences among middle school students in diverse settings.