Spring Term Information for Phillips Academy Families

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Maria Litvin

“I believe everyone can and should learn the basics of computer science and coding.”

At P.A. I’ve started up the Computer Science Club (going strong since 1998), brought in the Technovation Challenge app-building contest for girls (the documentary CodeGirl features our winning 2015 team!), helped students take part and win top awards in other contests including American Computer Science League (ACSL) and the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad (NACLO), and launched some new courses including CSC470, which blends math and computer programming. At the nearby Lawrence Boys & Girls Club, I advise a group of P.A. students who run a Coding Circle with area kids through the Community Engagement Program. My husband Gary and I co-write and publish a widely used set of computer science textbooks, including Mathematics for the Digital Age and Programming in Python, Java Methods and Be Prepared for the AP CS Exam in Java, and we also co-write computer contests for elementary and middle school kids for the Continental Math League. As a Code.org facilitator and consultant for The College Board, I lead workshops for teachers to help prepare them to teach coding and computer science to elementary school kids and Advanced Placement Computer Science to high schoolers. I was so pleased when the Phillipian ran an editorial recently calling for a computer science requirement for all students. It was a great vote of confidence in the core of my work: making math and computer science more accessible and fun for boys, girls, and even teachers.

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