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Coding with Carl: LPS Computer Science teacher gets creative with curriculum

Matt Rinne, playing Carl in a Coding with Carl video, teaching his students about algorithms.
Matt Rinne, playing Carl in a Coding with Carl video, teaching his students about algorithms.(KOLNKGIN)
Published: May. 7, 2020 at 5:52 PM CDT
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It's been about a month and a half of online learning for Lincoln Public School's students. Every subject from English to Physical Education has been transferred to computers. Computer science courses made the switch too, but one Lincoln elementary teacher is getting creative with his content.

Normally-- Matt Rinne would be spending the last part of his year here at Pyrtle Elementary teaching elements of computer science like algorithms or debugging. Now- he's taking his lessons from the real world and taking your student on a digital coding adventure.

As soon as classes were transferred online, Lincoln Public School's computer science team was on a mission to make learning fun..

"How can we introduce these same concepts to the students, but in a way that can be fun and engaging for them in their home settings," said Kent Steen, the Curriculum Specialist for Computer Science courses at LPS.

Rinne was the guy for the job.

"Present the information, make it silly," said Rinne, who was given free-reign for creating content, based on the curriculum the team gave him. "I know I wouldn't want to watch something dry."

It's called Coding with Carl.

Rinne is tackling all the things on the syllabus, with a certain creative flair.

"It's the same way I would teach it," said Rinne. "I probably wouldn't be in character, but I do use funny voices from time to time."

The team at LPS said this outside the box way of teaching is how teaching should be.

"Learning should be fun," said Steen. "Learning and teaching is fun. It's why we're there. To make the lessons fun and appealing to students was the goal."

While creating the videos have been fun, Rinne said nothing compares to being with his students.

"The part you miss the most is seeing the kids," said Rinne. "It's that interaction that you really do miss out on."

He gets help from his two children, who work as his camera operators. Rinne said parents and students alike have been enjoying his videos as Carl.

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