Culturally Responsive Cryptology and Cybersecurity Curriculum
An innovative blend of a comic book and technology-based and unplugged activities, CryptoComics engages children aged 7–11 in making and breaking codes, developing symbolic systems awareness, and learning about cryptology careers.
The culturally responsive curriculum is comprised of six chapters that can be used over three days. Chapter 1: “Decoding the Past” engages students in using pictures and symbols as codes. Chapter 2: “World of Words” presents word parts (morphemes) as codes. In Chapter 3: “Ciphers Everywhere,” children learn the history and use of substitution and transposition ciphers. In Chapter 4: “Cryptomath,” students discover mathematics and engineering in cryptology. Chapter 5: “Cybersecurity” provides strategies to be safe online. And Chapter 6: “Crypt-a-thon” presents a review of cryptology and cybersecurity, as well as a contest.
Zoom recordings orient students to the topics in the chapters for the day. Student activities are provided through a freely downloadable web app for laptops, desktops, and Chromebooks. Free for educators is a downloadable Implementation Guide, as well as printable PDFs and Comic Book Chapters (via Google Drive). Teachers can also access a video introduction for each chapter, as well as videos and other media related to the chapter’s topics.
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