C-Town Summer Bridge Program: A Student’s Perspective

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Andrea Thompson, a freshman at Charlestown High School, shares her involvement as a participant in the C-Town Tech Summer Bridge Program.

Afterwards, be sure to read our “Applying the Framework” summary that connects Andrea’s story to the Students at the Center Framework.

 

In C-town Tech, we learned things we’ve never seen before. For example, we learned how to build our own video game, scratch project, cryptography, and master our math skills.

Especially me when I came in the second day, I was confused when Mr. Ayyappan [the Information Technology high school teacher] gave me a piece of paper and said I had to decrypt the text. I was so confused, but he managed to explain to me how to decrypt the cryptogram. Our teacher Jaime [Bunker Hill Community College Professor] helped me especially decrypting a few cryptograms.

The math games we played with Mrs. Hall [another Charlestown High School teacher] have refreshed my memory a little bit more and made me work out my dendrites (brain cells) every morning. We play a game that makes us work out our minds to figure out how to make one number as the target by creating an expression using the seven numbers we choose. This creates a lot of dendrites in our brain!

C-Town Tech has made me more responsible as a 15 year old. I’ve been mastering more of my math skills with Mrs. Hall. She has made us work on Carnegie Tutor for hours during this summer program. It’s only been 15 days, but we’ve learned a lot from these teachers and our mentors.

The last week we worked on making our own platform games on the computers using a program named Sploder. Personally, I enjoyed working on making the platform games and my math class, because my favorite subject is math. I just enjoyed making my platform game, because I put in my creativity, and learned how the games I play and other people play are made.

C-Town Tech is not all about something to do over the summer and you get paid… You have to put in effort and time to be part of this program. I am glad I did it this year because now I know more people that I will be taking classes with next year.

To be honest I never thought this program was going to be fun or anything besides boring, but it turned out to be a lot of fun and interesting! They fed us and made us work on our math skills and prepare us more for high school. Thank you C-town Tech for this program. It was very fun and educational!

Authored by Andrea Thompson

 


 

Applying the Framework:
Looking at Student-Owned learning

 

  • Students take ownership of their learning through a variety of strategies – one of which is the use of technology in the classroom. “C-Town Tech” has made me more responsible as a 15-year old”. Technology in schools can provide opportunities for greater self-efficacy, personalized assessment, and offer opportunities to apply the learning into real-world scenarios.
  • Students have an understanding of how they learn – the student-author speaks of “working out her brain cells every morning”. Research shows that supporting students in identifying how deeper thinking happens is critical to fostering deeper learning experiences per individual. If a student identifies that intelligence is learned, they are more motivated to try.
  • Students had freedom and flexibility for their final projects. After understanding the principles of game-design, students were invited to create and share their own works using youth-generated materials and ideas. Students walked through each of their game designs by describing why they made the choices they made. Choices ranged from wanting the game to offer textual clues to choosing the most creative ways for characters to lose a round to adding difficult barriers to progression. Tapping into youth interests and promoting agency increases motivation and engagement for students.

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