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Empowering the Teachers with the NAPOJ - A Grassroots Movement Towards Computing Teachers Community of Practice

  • Andrej BrodnikEmail author
  • Matija Lokar
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 11913)

Abstract

Computing is a relatively new area in high school education, not only in Slovenia but worldwide. Therefore, there is lack of qualified Computing teachers. However, even the existing ones often feel isolated and consequently insecure. The latter often stems from lack of trust in their own teaching practices. These feeling can be alleviated through participation in a Community of practice (CoP).

The article describes activities taken in a project NAPOJ to form an active community of practice for Slovene Computing teachers. NAPOJ started as a grassroots movement in a group of high school teachers and few higher education teachers involved in various activities (in-service teacher training, programming competitions, ...). The main goal of the project NAPOJ is to involve teachers in an active building of their competencies and improve cooperation among them, such as exchange of study materials, and good practices.

We started building the community by gathering the necessary materials and tools for teaching programming, an area where the idea of necessary cooperation occurred. Three systems that teachers use in teaching were connected: e-textbook, web classroom and a system for automated testing of program correctness. In the second year, we added physical computing as a motivational element. In the ongoing third year, the main emphasis is on supporting the programming competition preparations and on the exchange of good practice examples among teachers. The core activity is the formation of the community portal and regular monthly video conferences where certain, mostly didactic, topics in Computing are discussed.

Keywords

Community of practice Computer Science teaching Computing teaching Motivation Teaching programming 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The NAPOJ and NAPOJ2 projects were financially supported by Google within Computer Science for High School. NAPOJ3 project was partly included in the SKOZ project. The work was also partially supported by the Slovenian Research Agency programme P2-0359 Pervasive computing.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Computer and Information ScienceUniversity of LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia
  2. 2.Faculty of Mathematics, Natural Sciences and Information TechnologiesUniversity of PrimorskaKoperSlovenia
  3. 3.Faculty of Mathematics and PhysicsUniversity of LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia

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