Squeak in North Carolina Schools
23 May, 2007
The University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) has published the following press release:
Wilmington, N.C. – While demand for Information Technology (IT) professionals is projected to increase over the next five years, a dwindling number of American students are choosing to specialize in IT fields. Now, a grant-funded partnership between the University of North Carolina Wilmington and the New Hanover, Pender and Brunswick County schools is addressing that issue by infusing IT skills into the curriculum in grades 7-12.
The three-year-long project will work directly with about 75 educators who teach the Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) curricula and 150 of their students in grades 7-12. Teachers and students will learn to use “Squeak” software to create virtual models that simulate actual science and math-related experiments. For example, students could create a computer model to study the transmission of a disease, an activity that could be too dangerous to study in a physical laboratory.
“It may be difficult to study the spread of a virus for real in middle school,” said Gene Tagliarini, associate professor of computer science and grant coordinator. “But you can simulate an epidemic using the Squeak tool, which can create models to study things as abstract as balancing equations or as concrete as building a bridge.”
You can read the complete press release on the UNCW website.