Bootstrap has trained thousands of teachers across the USA and reaches tens of thousands of students per year. By integrating content into classes that students are already taking, we reach diverse populations: historically, our student populations have been over 43% for each of female and HUG students, with many from Title 1 schools. The vast majority of our teachers have no prior computing experience. Our research shows positive transfer from Bootstrap content to typical standardized exam questions in math, as well as increased understanding of both computing and their home discipline with participating teachers. The impact page on our website has more details (https://www.BootstrapWorld.org/impact/).
- Need Accomplished
- Evaluation Developing
- Sustainability Accomplished
- Replication & Scalability Accomplished
- Partnerships Accomplished
- Capacity Accomplished
- Challenging & Relevant Content Accomplished
- STEM Practices Accomplished
- Inspiration Accomplished
- Under-Represented Groups Developing
A teacher wouldn’t have to have any Computer Science background. Bootstrap broadens the horizon of what you can use functions for, but in a concrete way. It was especially helpful for students who usually aren’t engaged either because they don’t like math or because they are good at math and it’s too easy or boring. You help both extremes. Bootstrap is an alternative [to just doing more worksheets] that reinforces what you were trying to teach anyway.
The programs in this database clear a high bar. STEMworks reviewed each program against the Design Principles for Effective STEM Philanthropy. Programs must be Accomplished () across all Design Principles, or be Developing () in a maximum of three areas.
Identify and target a compelling and well-defined need.
Use rigorous evaluation to continuously measure and inform progress towards the compelling need identified.
Ensure work is sustainable.
Replication & Scalability Accomplished
Demonstrate replicability and scalability.
Create high impact partnerships.
Ensure organizational capacity to achieve goals.
Challenging & Relevant Content Accomplished
Offer challenging and relevant STEM content for the target audience.
STEM Practices Accomplished
Incorporate and encourage STEM practices.
Inspire interest and engagement in STEM.
Under-Represented Groups Developing
Identify and address the needs of under-represented groups.
Bootstrap crafts research-based curricular modules for integrating computing and data science into existing middle- and high-school courses, such as math, physics, and social studies. Our materials reinforce core concepts from math (algebra and statistics), using computing and data to support modeling and analysis skills that can embed into contexts of a teacher’s choice. We place data science at the intersection of computing, math, and domains of study. This enables schools to simultaneously work towards a range of math and computer science standards within their existing courses. Our materials are hands-on and project-based, with a combination of work both off and on a computer. We specialize in working with teachers with no prior background in computing or data science. Our materials enable teachers to ease into computing and data science in multiple steps over time. Our professional-development workshops devote considerable time to pedagogy as well as content. We are happy to work with districts to plan professional development and curricular pathways that meet their needs. Our lessons can be sequenced into different lengths or depth of content, from 5th grade through high school and into a college-level computer science course (from Brown University).
Funders and Partners
Bootstrap has been funded by The National Science Foundation, several foundations, and private donors. An up-to-date list of funders is on our website.