What is Metrics?
Metrics is a whole school immersion approach to computer science (CS) integrated across the curriculum into daily classroom and real-world experiences to boost traditionally underrepresented, high-need student aspirations, attainment, and achievement. Winchester is one of ten public schools in the country to receive the coveted Education Innovation and Research Early-Phase grant from the U.S. Department of Education. This $4 million innovation and research grant supports two K-4 elementary schools in WPS, John Kerr Elementary and Garland Quarles Elementary for the next five years. Through the Metrics program, students will have an immersive experience with computer science and computational thinking which are driving the 21st century economy.
Goals of Metrics:
- Create rigorous CS curriculum units and assessments to support STEM coursework connected across all subjects through problem-based learning
- Provide a high-quality teacher development and support process to sustain innovative CS instructional practices
- Strengthen students’ tethers to CS and STEM coursework by engaging students in real-world linkages beyond the classroom.
- Support students through CS integrated STEM, PEDLE, and Makerspace Labs.
Partners of Metrics
Without the support of many program partners, Metrics, would not be possible: Bright Futures, CodeVA, Handley Trust Fund, Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, Shenandoah University, Shenandoah Valley Discovery Museum, STARBASE, and local industry partners, including Annandale Millwork & Allied Systems; Frederick Block, Brick, and Stone; Perry Engineering; Shenandoah Valley Westminster Canterbury Company; Winchester F&R, and Winchester Metals.
Why Computer Science?
Computer Science (CS) is an exciting, vital and growing field. Virginia has become a leader in CS by creating and implementing CS standards K-12 in 2017. There are many opportunities for our students' futures in computing with over 40,000 jobs in Virginia alone in CS fields. While future jobs are important, we also know that teaching computer science is important for all students, regardless of what field they may one day enter. We want our students to become thoughful consumers, creative and critical thinkers, and curious and engaged problem solvers. Through CS education, students will learn to use computational thinking and learning to solve problems-with or without a computer! Computational thinking is the building blocks of our digital world, with the concepts forming the basis of much computer science.
Computational Thinking Concepts and Approaches
- Algorithms: a sequence of instructions or a set of rules to get something done.
- Decomposition: the process of breaking down a task into smaller, more-manageable parts.
- Patterns:By identifying patterns, students can create rules and solve more-general problems.
- Abstraction: simplifying things – identifying what’s important without worrying too much about detail.
- Debugging: the process of finding and fixing errors in a problem.
- Tinkering: trying out something new to discover what it does and how it works.