by James Bailey |

Self Schooling is a long-term project focused on a self-taught curriculum based in the Biology, Ecology, Algorithms, Data, and Society (BEADS) subjects. A first round of materials—books and apps—is now available on this selfschooling.com website. For the 2017-18 school year, Self Schooling is focusing on three more specific questions; testing if computers can take three areas of knowledge that are now thriving in graduate schools and deliver them all the way down into the middle school years.

  1. Landscape Ecology: Can the results that ecologists are now getting in simulating the behavior of local ecologies be put into a visual form that is accessible even to kids?
  2. Network Algorithms: Can the methods of “Deep Learning” be made accessible to the point that middle schoolers can watch their computers learn? And understand how they do it?
  3. "Veritas”: What is the concept of “truth” that kids need in order to thrive in the 21st century? (Hint: It’s not the one they now get in mathematics class.)

As we grapple with these three challenges, we will report our experiences—and hopefully our progress—here.

Why a Focus On the Middle School Years?

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