What is CoolThink@JC?
In 2016, The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust found that global technology education trend and local policy readiness has cultivated a positive environment to further promote and refresh technology education.
Researches and experts have also suggested that primary 4 students (age 9 or 10) are physically, mentally and logically mature to start learning basic computational thinking concepts and practicing light-weighted visual-based programming tools to inspiring their digital creativity.
Computational Thinking is conceptualising, not programming. Coding is the ability to write programming language that provide step-by-step instructions to computers. Computational thinking is the thought process required to write good codes. It requires learners to think like computer scientists, who can demonstrate abilities such as logical thinking, problem solving, abstraction and disaggregate complex problems into smaller solvable parts.
An important design principle of the CoolThink@JC program is that it is not limited to programming instruction; instead, it is tuned to emphasize this broader definition of computational thinking.
CoolThink@JC – Computational Thinking Education Programme – empower students to become thinkers and creators of technology.
CoolThink@JC is a 8-year (2016-2024), HK$523M donation from the Trust that transforms computational thinking education in Hong Kong schools.
We started a 4-year pilot in 32 schools to prove our model works. SRI conducted a rigorous 3-year independent evaluation for the project and concluded that CoolThink students significantly outperformed their peers in control schools. We continue our scaling out effort to reach critical mass of adoption. As of June 2023, we has reached 100% of aided primary schools in HK, 204 of them are CoolThink network schools teaching 14+ hours of computational thinking education in formal computing lessons.
We’ve supported more than 80,000 students, over 2,000 in-service and pre-service teachers, and more than 30,000 parents. We’ve organised more than 400 parent-child workshops and attracted over 1,300 teams of students joining city-wide annual Student Competition. We also organised annual international CTE conference between 2017 and 2020, coding fair and commendation events for educators and students.
Our high quality curriculum received International Society for Technology Education (ISTE) Seal of Alignment for meeting the ISTE student standard, received certification by Education Alliance Finland, won two awards in the QS Reimagine Education Awards 2021 (Silver Award in the Engineering & IT and Bronze Award in the Presence Learning and Teaching category), and selected by HundrEd.org Global Collection 2023. More importantly, the programme achieved its long term sustainability mission of mainstreaming CT education in May 2023. The Education Bureau of the HKSAR Government adopted and adapted CoolThink learning materials and associated pedagogy and tools to all publicly-funded primary schools (view more). Starting from 2023-24 school year, all primary schools have to teach at least 10-14 hours of computational thinking and enriched coding education for upper primary students.