NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1058220
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-May
Pages: 35
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0036-8326
Balancing Curricular and Pedagogical Needs in Computational Construction Kits: Lessons from the DeltaTick Project
Wilkerson-Jerde, Michelle; Wagh, Aditi; Wilensky, Uri
Science Education, v99 n3 p465-499 May 2015
To successfully integrate simulation and computational methods into K-12 STEM education, learning environments should be designed to help educators maintain balance between (a) addressing curricular content and practices and (b) attending to student knowledge and interests. We describe DeltaTick, a graphical simulation construction interface for the NetLogo modeling environment designed to make computational model construction a more "accessible" and "responsive" part of science and mathematics curricular activities through domain-specific, customizable construction libraries. With DeltaTick, learners assemble and reassemble predefined sets of "behavior blocks" to build simulations that represent a particular domain of study. When needed, blocks can be added, adjusted, or replaced to better reflect student knowledge, interests, or questions. We present coding analyses and vignettes from DeltaTick enactments in middle and high school classrooms to illustrate ways these features allowed learners to explore core curricular ideas, while also accommodating emergent student or classroom needs. From these findings, we posit two principles, "curricular example space" and "levels of responsivity," for the design of computational modeling environments intended for classrooms. We argue that this design approach can bring into better alignment the complex relationships between computational modeling activities, student knowledge, curricula, and teacher supports in K-12 classrooms.
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools; High Schools; Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: DRL-1020101|IIS-0713619|DRL-1109834