Ep 53: A Teacher Reveals How to Help Kids Learn Computer Science with Nicole Reitz-Larsen

Ep 53: A Teacher Reveals How to Help Kids Learn Computer Science with Nicole Reitz-Larsen

Nicole Reitz-Larsen (@reitzlarsen) is a secondary classroom teacher with 15+ years teaching experience. She has taught everything from AP/IB Computer Science, to German, Multimedia and Business related courses. She loves working with students and is passionate about equity in education and providing opportunities for all students to be successful.

She works with teachers nationwide on the CSforAllTeachers.org site and with Code.org to promote the importance of computer science, assist districts in implementing computer science K-12 in schools to broaden participation of underrepresented students of color and females.

You can often find her facilitating Computer Science workshops nationwide, presenting at teacher conferences or meet ups because she loves working with educators to provide them with resources, and teaching strategies around equity and inquiry, while creating an environment that is inclusive of all students, as well as in the classroom which she calls home.

In this episode, we discussed:

  • the key challenges students face in the computer science classroom and best practices for helping them overcome them.
  • tools parents can use to help their kids learn computer science.



CS for All Teachers

Made with Code


Nonviolent Communication by Marshall B. Rosenberg


Anonymous hackers some experts believe have Russian ties released a trove of tools the National Security Agency uses to exploit bugs on the Internet to conduct spying operations. For years, the NSA has resisted efforts by institutions to reveal the bugs it was exploiting so they could be fixed. Now, those bugs are on full display for all the world to see. Ellen Nakashima covers this story at the Washington Post and Andy Greenberg is covering it for Wired.
Hackers believed to have Russian ties also got into billionaire George Soros and his Open Society Foundations’ files last week, according to Julian Hattem at the Hill. Two thousand documents were released giving an inside look into how the powerful Democratic supporter and his Foundations operate.

Google isn’t out of the woods yet regarding the way it scans emails to serve up ads. Google scans not just Gmail messages, but also anyone interacting with Gmail, from any domain. The plaintiffs sued Google in the Northern District of California alleging that the company’s email scanning practices violate wiretapping provisions of both the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and California’s own state privacy laws. Google argued the practice is within the ordinary course of business. But US District Judge Lucy Koh disagreed, ordering the case to move forward. Joe Mullin covers this for Ars Technica.
It looks like internet service providers are going to have to start putting some of its users on blast for copyright infringement-even before they have been convicted of it. The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia ruled last week that Cox must pay $25 million to BMG Music for failing to notify users that they had infringed music copyrights by participating in illegal file sharing. BMG enlisted a 3rd party to monitor Cox’ users for infringement and when it found infringement, notified Cox. But Cox then prevented its users from receiving notifications. So the court ruled Cox now owes BMG a $25 million penalty. Brian Fung has that story at the Washington Post.

Univision has won the bid for Gawker Media’s bankruptcy assets. Gawker announced last week it would be ceasing operations. The announcement was made after months of speculation about the fate of the company, following a devastating $140 million judgment against Gawker in favor of Hulk Hogan. Hulk Hogan sued Gawker for posting a video showing Hogan having sex with radio Bubba the Love Sponge’s wife. Keepin it classy, baby! Anyway, Univision’s bid for Gawker’s assets was $135 million, pending approval by the Bankruptcy Court. Lukas Alpert has the story in the Wall Street Journal.
Finally, The DOJ and FTC are seeking comment on proposed rules to update the guidelines we use to license intellectual property. The comments are due September 26th.