Open letter: How Computer Science learners amaze this rural educator

Priority applications close April 30th for the Ohio’s next cohort of educators trained to teach Computer Science Discoveries and Computer Science Principles from This program, delivered through the Ohio STEM Learning Network, is an intensive, year-long learning experience for middle and high school educators.

Below, read Ottawa teacher Cody Vennekotter’s letter on how the program and course impacted students in Ottawa, Ohio and his teaching experience. Learn about scholarships and apply here.

Cody Vennekotter Headshot

Greetings to all. My name is Cody Vennekotter. I am a High School Math and Computer teacher at Ottawa-Glandorf High School. I have been teaching Computer Science Principles through since the 2016/2017 school year. I have enjoyed my time teaching the course and gives all the resources to be able to teach effectively.

Going into teaching CSP I have had very limited experience with programming and Computer Science. I took one class in undergraduate school at BGSU, 5 years prior to this training. So when I was contacted by my principal to add the class and go to the training I was nervous but I also enjoyed learning new things and expanding my knowledge and I knew then Computer Science is going to keep growing and it would be a great addition to our curriculum. So I went to the professional development held in Chicago in August 2016. This training was a huge help in implementing the curriculum in our school. It taught me how to effectively teach the content and gave me a cohort of teachers to contact if I have any questions or need any help with the content. I have become very confident in teaching the course and it has become one of my favorite courses to teach. After the training held in Chicago, Battelle held training throughout the year in Columbus my first year teaching. This training was good to have as it was a great help to be able to ask questions and talk to other teachers who were teaching the curriculum for the first time throughout the year.

Priority application window for Ohio’s Professional Learning Program closes April 30
Learn more about the program’s schedule, expectations, and scholarship opportunities here. Apply here through the website.

Know a teacher who should apply? Nominate them.

Teaching Computer Science Principles has been one of my favorite classes to teach. I have had the privilege to teach students of all backgrounds in Computer Science and Programming. I have had students who have no knowledge of computers and students who have a lot of experience with computers and programing. Both sets of students has its own set of challenges and rewards. To be able to see a student grow and learn Computer Science is amazing. To see that a student can go from not knowing how to program and then be able to create their own program and app is a great feeling. And also to see what a student can make and design is just amazing and how good it can be. The course is designed to challenge and engage all students, not just beginners and not just advanced programmingers. To see all students grow is an amazing thing every school year.

Cody Vennekotter
Ottawa-Glandorf High School

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