Document Type


Journal/Book Title/Conference

2023 American Educational Research Association’s Annual Meeting (AERA 2023)


Chicago, IL

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This study examines how a rural-serving school district aimed to provide elementary level computer science (CS) by offering instruction during students’ computer lab, a class taught by paraprofessional educators with limited background in computing. As part of a research practice partnership, cross-context mathematics and CS lessons were co-designed to expansively frame and highlight connections across – as opposed to integration within – the two subjects. Findings indicate that the paraprofessionals teaching the lessons generally reported positive experiences and understanding of content; however, those less comfortable with the content reported lower student interest. Further, most students who engaged with the lessons across the lab and classroom contexts reported finding the lessons interesting, seeing connections to their mathematics classes, and understanding the programming. In contrast, students who only learned about mathematics connections within the CS lessons (thus not in a cross-context way) reported significantly lower levels of interest, connections, and understanding.