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Volunteers teaching algebra through computer coding

“How do we expect kids to succeed in a global economy when we don’t prioritize what’s basically 21st-century literacy?” said Bill Stitson, a software engineer at Trip Advisor, with student Ngan Ly.
“How do we expect kids to succeed in a global economy when we don’t prioritize what’s basically 21st-century literacy?” said Bill Stitson, a software engineer at Trip Advisor, with student Ngan Ly.GEORGE LEVINES FOR THE GLOBE

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A software engineer at Trip Advisor, Bill Stitson finds himself every Tuesday at the McCormack Middle School in Dorchester helping sixth-graders learn algebra by making video games.

No, it’s not a pushover class.

Stitson is among a number of tech industry professionals who have volunteered to help teach an innovative math curriculum called Bootstrap, which uses computer coding to help students learn algebra functions in real-life applications, rather than in abstract problem-solving.

“I had students who were amazed that when they played Call of Duty that shooting the enemy required a programmer to use the pythagorean theorem in the programming,” said Peter Isham, a teacher at the McKinley Middle School in Boston who has used Bootstrap in a summer program.

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