Computational Thinking

Cornell Tech

Computational Thinking is a framework for applying intentional thinking to problem solving where students cultivate skills, attitudes and habits that are fundamental, universal, and transferable across content areas and applicable in the real world.  

Cornell Tech partners with us to help us deliver instructional tasks that allow our student to use this framework.  Over the years, our in-residence teacher from Cornell Tech has collaborated with our staff members to to develop lessons in computer science, math, and ELA. that incorporate CT concepts and approaches.   

Computational Thinking Concepts

When I am solving a problem, here are some Thinking Skills I can use:


Predicting & Analyzing


Making judgements


Making steps and rules


Spotting & using similarities


Breaking down into parts


Removing unnecessary detail

Logic Icon

  • Use the facts to make a predictions.

 Evaluation Icon

  • Does is answer the question?
  • Can I explain?
  • Is there another way?

Algorithms Icon

  • Write the steps
  • Follow the steps

Patterns Icon

  • Spot and use similarities to other problems
  • Spot and use similarities inside the problem
  • Create rules

Decomposition Icon

  • Break down the problem into smaller parts
  • Try to solve on part at a time

Abstraction Icon

  • Pull out the most important idea
  • Remove the distracting details 
  • Make a model


Computational Thinking Approaches

When I am STUCK, here is what I can do:


Keeping going


Working together


Changing things to see what happens


Designing & making


Finding & Fixing Errors

 Persevering Icon

  • Stick to it
  • Try something new
  • Don't erase-think about how to use your mistake
  • Think about a strategy you can use

Collaborating Icon

  • Help your partner
  • Ask questions
  • Give feedback to your partner
  • Listen and use feedback

Tinkering Icon

  • Take time to explore ideas
  • Act it out
  • Use manipulatives
  • Try it a different way

Creating Icon

  • Make a model
  • Draw a picture
  • Make an organized list

 Debugging Icon

  • Reread the task
  • Look for patterns
  • Try one piece at a time