Guide for CS Principles teachers during school closures

With schools closed around the country and around the world, many Code.org classrooms are moving to using our CS Principles curriculum in a virtual setting. This page is where we will be sharing updates, resources, and guidance on how to continue to support your students in that context.

If you are a teacher or parent interested in starting to teach a new course during a school closure, we do not recommend starting CS Principles virtually. Instead, choose from our recommendations for learning at home.

The primary resources we’ve put together here include:

We know that teaching in a virtual setting is a new challenge for many. We also know that many of our students lack access to technology that would allow them to participate in virtual learning. We are working quickly to address this rapidly developing situation and will continue to update this page with resources and recommendations as we have them.

Share on the Forum

You are highly encouraged to share any questions or insights on our CS Principles Forum where you'll find many other teachers working together to navigate the transition to virtual instruction.

College Board Announcements and AP Testing

The College Board is updating collegeboard.org/ap-covid19-updates as they continue to announce their response to this rapidly changing situation. As of April 7th, when this page was last updated, these announcements included:

Performance Task Prep

We know many classrooms just started or have not yet started Create Performance Task. Our team has created a number of resources to help classrooms now teaching CSP virtually:

Virtualization Plan - Unit by Unit

The recommendations below are for classrooms in which students will primarily be working independently and will have few opportunities to meet virtually with you or their classmates.

Supporting Student Learning - Your role as the teacher

While the directions above will help you get content to your students in a virtual environment, it is also important to consider how you can support your students through this learning. Doing this asynchronously means that students won’t have easy access to peers to collaborate with or a teacher to ask questions of. We also know that not every student will have access to an adult who can help them with the content at home. Your role is important in supporting student learning more than ever.

Below are some ideas that you may be able to utilize depending on your own capacity and your district policies.

Again, depending on your capacity and your district policies, these options may or may not work for your context. Consider what will work best for you and your students.

Managing a Virtual Classroom on Code.org

The Code.org Teacher Dashboard allows you to view student progress, review student projects, and provide feedback. The following articles will be useful to review as you move to a virtual setting.

Supporting Instruction in Non-AP Classrooms

If you are using our CS Principles curriculum in a non-AP context many of the same recommendations should still help you teach our courses in a virtual environment. Many classrooms even assign the Create and Explore PTs as end-of-year projects. Consider whether virtual options for these projects will work in your classroom setting. You may also consider any number of virtual options listed at code.org/athome.

We also recommend you consider CSTA's Resources to Support Teaching During COVID-19 for an extensive set of options for continuing to teach computer science during school closures.

Supporting Students with Limited Technology Access

We know many of our CS Principles students lack access to the internet or a laptop at home. The following resources are available for students lacking internet access, a laptop, or both, while they are continuing to study CS Principles from home.