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  1. null (Ed.)
    We describe a research study aimed at understanding the basic code reasoning challenges of elementary school children. The research targets third to fifth grade African American students as a step towards making computer science accessible to all children. The study was conducted in a summer camp with 40 students and replicated with 20 new students the following summer. Also participating in the second summer camp were 19 returning students. For data collection, the study uses code-tracing activities involving concepts such as variables, assignments, operators, and sequencing. Performance data is automatically collected in the background as children engage in the activities incorporated in a video game and also through think-aloud sessions. Results include common code understanding challenges for all children. 
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  2. In this BoF we discuss the tenets of culturally responsive computer science and how teachers, professors and providers of professional development can include culturally responsive perspectives in their classes. In contrast to other academic fields, which typically include rigid curricular tracks ostensibly based on academic performance, talent, or ability that pose structural barriers to access to rigorous academic instruction for underrepresented students, the field of computer science education is explicitly focused on broadening participation, as evidenced by the SIGCSE community's consistent emphasis on equitable representation. Culturally responsive computing (CRC) is founded on culturally responsive teaching (CRT) and on CRT's three tenets: asset building (in contrast to deficit approaches), reflection, and connectedness. CRC frames these tenets for the specifics of computing education. CRC's tenet that all students are capable of digital innovation should drive teachers' interactions and relationships with students. CRC also requires that teachers be continually reflective about their privilege and constraints and how those are connected with our worldviews. This topic is significant because teachers must be connected to their students in non-traditional ways that prize diversity as an asset to innovation. The participants are expected to include professors, lecturers, high school teachers and industry experts who are interested in employing culturally responsive computing approaches in their own teaching and professional development activities. A major goal of the BoF is to establish connections among the participants to promote the sharing of resources and best practices. 
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  3. This paper investigates prospective computer science teachers’ perceptions of the concepts of inquiry and equity, and how these concepts changed or developed over the course of a week-long professional development (PD) experience. Initial results indicate that teachers’ meanings for inquiry were, even at the start of the PD, well-informed. Teachers’ perceptions of equity were more uncertain at the start of the PD but developed over the course of the week, resulting in more teachers’ exhibiting an asset-based approach to equity as well as greater confidence in implementing equitable practices. 
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  4. This paper presents an overview of the objectives and design of a video game, CodeTracesure, that we have used in a summer camp for elementary school African-American children. The game is designed to help children practice CS concepts as they play and to help teachers learn about their difficulties. It combines engaging elements of good games with pedagogy to provide a platform where students can practice CS concepts learned in class. It covers such concepts as assignment, variables, sequencing, and operators. The game is equipped with a database to facilitate collection of data that can be analyzed for trends and patterns. The current goal is for it to be a supplementary tool that can help the students practice while allowing teachers to collect useful data that can help improve the learning process. An initial study was conducted using this game with about 40 African-American elementary school children. Findings show that the game was useful in motivating the students to practice code tracing and learn CS concepts. The backend end data that was collected on the performance of the students helped to identify potential pitfalls. 
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