First Name

Richard

Last Name

Bell

Bio

I have been a Math and Computer Science teacher at Cranford High School for 15 years, and an adjunct professor at Kean University for 5 years. Building the computer science program at CHS has been a goal of mine since I have begun and I have been pretty successful with the help of my students and support of my supervisors. Through word of mouth and presentations at our Hour of Code event, our number of classes has increased to the point where we needed another teacher. We now have 3 levels of Web Design, one Intro to Programming and 2 sections of an intro class on Game Theory and Design, as well as the the AP Computer Science A and AP CS Principles courses. Our CS Principles is in its third year and is preparing for the AP test this year. I have also been a member of CSTA for several years, working with teachers all over NJ to help bring computer science to more students and to discuss and share our own abilities and methods. I am adviser to our HS' after school computer club called the Computer Honors Society, where our nearly 50 members discuss current technology trends, our officers teach various topics to our members at our weekly meetings, we run community service events for our local Girl Scouts and at our local Senior Care Facility, and participate in Hackathons and Capture the Flag events. This group used to be 5-6 members before I took over 7 years ago, and we have grown it into a very popular place for students to learn more about computer science, as well as play ultimate frisbee against the stage crew. These "(CHS)^2" students (Cranford High School Computer Honors Society) help run the Hour of Code event for our entire school in December. Our girls in the club have partnered up with a local girl scout troop in order to do the Hour of Code with those girls as well. They are a focused and fun group to be a part of and I have really enjoyed helping foster their love of computing. I am honored to have received the NCWIT Educator Award for NJ in 2017, and have continued my work building our program by starting the Girls Who Code chapter in our school and continued work with larger groups of Girl Scouts in the area.