The situation of CS teaching in Spain:
- A general lack of awareness of what CS is
- A tendency to think in terms of teaching ICT
- Over-teaching theory
- Taught, if at all by IT teachers with a heavy theoretical content bent and not aimed towards motivation
- No emphasis on discovery of the creative potential of CS
- CS is seen as dry, technical and generally "not for me"
Only in Catalonia, has programming mobile apps been introduced for 12-16 year-olds while in Madrid, Technology, Programming, and Robotics has been introduced into the curriculum. There is however, nothing at Primary where, as we all know, is where we grab children's attention! Instead they drift into Computer Science from doing Maths in Secondary and from personal interest. This, unfortunately means that intake in Computing degree courses is skewed about 85:15 towards to males.
Codemas started up two years ago aiming to help in rectifying this situation. Funded by Google, modelled on CAS it was designed as a community of practice. We have not until recently begun to have much success, being very much a voice in the wilderness, until recent interest from three areas in Spain in training their Primary teachers how to go about teaching CS and more importantly, how to incorporate it into a Primary system that has subject specific classes on (for example) Maths, History, Languages, Sciences.
So finally we are gaining some traction, but at the same time getting to the end of our initial funding grant. To address this we have accepted some paid training engagement as well as an offer to produce commercial CS materials for Primary. We are leaning heavily on enthusiasts but their time is limited and so income is necessary to remunerate people for their work with Codemas.
Codemas will continue to attempt to be essentially a community site, but we are seeing that we need to be slightly more aggressive, people will not come to us, we need to go to them!