April 2024 Member Newsletter
Our next CSTA-MN is coming up next week, on April 23, 2024.
  • 3:30 - 4:00 PM Central Time (register)
  • 6:30 - 7:00 PM Central Time (register)
We hope you can join us for either of our meeting times! The same content is shared at both times.
Photo by KAL VISUALS on Unsplash


Seeking new rural and tribal school partners

K12 CS Pathways for Rural and Tribal Communities Project -- This NSF project aims to build district and educator capacity in computer science (CS) education. The project aims to increase access to and participation in CS education in rural and tribal communities and create sustainable ways for CS education implementation. Interested? Learn more by checking out this video overview or 1-page summary. Complete the interest form if you want to be contacted about this opportunity: https://forms.gle/zfWxePxvCoNaeCzg6

CSTA board member elections are happening. Submit your vote!

Did you know a Minnesota candidate is running to be on the CSTA board? Read about all of the candidates, and submit your vote here:
Or copy and paste the link into your web browser.
You can also visit https://secure.electionbuddy.com/ballot/ and enter "YNZV-ZHGJ-2PCX-VBSP" to vote.



Computer Science For All, CS Pioneers Calendar

Print this calendar out and hang it up each month, highlighting specific people in their birthday month. Also includes a Black History Month Guidebook. From CS4All Equity. https://sites.google.com/schools.nyc.gov/cs4all-equity/



Abilities Design: “A New Framework to Brainstorm Accessible Solutions”

Wednesday, April 17 • 4:00-5:30 pm
Online • Zoom -- Register here.
Join Dr. John O’Neill of UMD’s Graphic Design Department to discuss the design of accessible solutions.
John is a disability advocate and designer who brings awareness to ableism and disability rights. He is a Professor of Graphic Design at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD), teaching graphic design, user experience (UX) design, and accessibility. His design practice consists of traditional graphic design and exploring design processes and methods to best achieve accessibility. John is also a photographer who explores urban and rural environments.

Northland Hackathon

April 20: Register here: https://northlandhackathon.com/ 
Minnesota's Biggest Hackathon for high school students in Minnesota who want to learn how to:
- make websites
- make apps
- learn how to design
- learn how tech gets built
Also featuring speaker Amogh Kambale, April 18, 7pm CST: (Software Engineer at Square "Success, failures, and learnings from building apps on the side." Sign up to join for the speech)


Minnesota Indian Education Association Conference

  • April 17-19, Agenda
  • CS and STEM Presentations, including:
  • Integrating Lessons of Three Sisters plantings with Computer Science Learning (Paul Schonfeld)
  • Computer Science Education for Indigenous Students (Jen Rosato, Valerie Tanner, Tami Liberty, Caleb Dunlap, Andrea Wilson Vazquez)
  • Infusing Ojibwemowin into STEAM (Anjanette Parisien and Siena Braun)
  • Centering Ancestral Knowledge in STEM Education (Brittany Anderson)

CSTA Annual Conference

July 16th - 19th
As a computer science teacher, you are often the only one in your building or maybe even in your district. There is a whole community of computer science educators like you. Connect with the world’s largest CS department at the CSTA 2024 Annual Conference, set for July 16–19, 2024, in Las Vegas! Learn more about the conference and plan your trip by visiting their website here.


Save the Date: Scratch Conference 2024: Create Your Own Adventure

The Scratch Conference is an international gathering of educators, researchers, and developers sharing ideas and strategies for supporting creative learning and creative coding. Join us on July 24 for hands-on workshops exploring new Scratch and ScratchJr activities, interactive panel discussions, and demonstrations of innovative Scratch extensions and integrated technologies. Learn more about the conference here.


Three Sisters & Scratch PD

Online April 24 - 3:30 - 4:30 p.m. CST
Free to attend, stipends available
The Northern Lights Collaborative for Computing Education will hold an online professional development (PD) session for elementary and middle-school educators. The session is free to attend, and stipends are available for U.S. educators teaching grades 5-9 who complete requirements for teaching the lesson this school year (see the form below for requirements).

This unit introduces a 4-day unit guiding students to make predictions and understand the reciprocal relationships between corn, beans, and squash, known as Three Sisters plantings, while using, investigating, and modifying Scratch programs to make illustrations of those plants. The unit highlights indigenous perspectives from Anishinaabe and Dakota traditions.
Interest form (Due 4/19: https://forms.gle/g4s9VvaW7fy7nqRX7)


April 25th: Python in Education: For Beginners

A virtual session focused on the basics of Python. No previous experience required! All participants walk away with a ready to go lesson plan to try out with students.  (register)

Applications Open: MNCodes Educator Cohort

Year-long CSTA Accredited PD for PK-12 educators. Each month, teachers explore a variety of CS topics, examine equity and belonging in CS, and network with other educators.  (apply)


June 24th - 28th: Computer Science Discoveries (6-10)

A 5-day in-person summer workshop held at Target North Campus focused on preparing educators to utilize Code.org curriculum and support systems.  (register)

June 24th - 28th: CS Principles (9-12)

A 5-day in-person summer workshop held at Target North Campus focused on preparing educators to utilize Code.org curriculum and support systems.  (register)

June 24th - 28th: CS-A (10-12)

A 5-day in-person summer workshop held at Target North Campus focused on preparing educators to utilize Code.org curriculum and support systems.  (register)



Code Explorers

This is a free and welcoming environment for students ages 8 and up to learn and explore a variety of computer science topics, and programs alongside dedicated industry mentors. All sessions have a virtual and in-person option for students! Below are the upcoming dates for our spring sessions! In-person sessions are held from 1:30 - 3:30 PM at Minneapolis College. Virtual sessions are held from 10:00 - noon. Register below:

Girls Who Code Summer Programs

Do you have high school students looking for opportunities to learn more about computer science this summer? Apply for Girls Who Code’s virtual Summer Immersion program and learn game design with fellow students, or choose the 6-week Self-Paced Program to learn about AI, cybersecurity, and more! If you are a 9th-12th grade girl or non-binary student interested in leveling up your coding skills and having fun, apply today! Both programs are free! You can learn more here

Science Museum of Minnesota: Summer Camps

The Science Museum of Minnesota hosts a variety of summer programming for students in grades 1 to 6 that introduces them to programming with Scratch and more! Check out the library of opportunities they have set for programming this summer here!

Coding Camps at The Works Museum

Explore coding, sequencing, and logic at our coding camps for kids ages 6-12. Your camper can program their own robot creations, assemble a Raspberry Pi system, use Python coding language, and more. Learn more about this summer opportunity here!

Job Opportunities

For more opportunities, check out the CSTA job board: https://jobs.csteachers.org/