Volunteer Guide

Click here for a PDF version of the guide.

The Volunteer Role

As a TEALS volunteer, you’ll serve as part of a team led by a partner classroom teacher. You’ll work directly with students in a CS class, and you’ll help prepare a classroom teacher to teach Intro to Computer Science Principles, AP CS A (Java Programming), or an AP CS Principles course on their own.

TEALS supports schools using three different models. Our most critical need is for volunteers for our Co-Teaching Model – the highest level of support we offer a school.

Co-Teaching Model

All Volunteers

  • Serve on a teaching team led by a classroom teacher
  • Attend class ~2-3 times per week
  • Answer student questions
  • Grade assignments
  • Share your personal story and inspire students to continue pursuing computer science in college or career
  • Meet as a team to track student progress and plan upcoming classes

Teacher Role

  • Adapt lesson plans from the TEALS curriculum for use in your class
  • Deliver lessons to your class

Teaching Assistant Role

  • Assist students with their lab work
  • Grade assignments

Extraordinary Opportunity, Extraordinary Commitment

A representative example of a year-long TEALS commitment of 280 hours.

A representative example of a year-long TEALS commitment of 280 hours.

TEALS offers a unique opportunity for technology professionals to co-teach computer science in a high school, and help establish a sustainable computer science program at the school.

There’s no beating around the bush. Volunteering with TEALS requires an extraordinary commitment. Most of our high school classes meet 1st period so volunteers can teach and get in to work, which can mean teaching as early as 7:30am.

Each school is different and volunteers’ experiences vary greatly. We make the commitment more flexible by assigning multiple volunteers to each school. Teaching teams manage their own schedules, but we expect each team member to attend approximately 50% of class sessions, so that there is at least 1 volunteer in the classroom each day the class meets.

We also run a mandatory training program for volunteers during the summer. We expect volunteers to spend 20 hours in online and in-person training sessions, plus another 20 hours working with their teaching team and preparing for the school year.

Teaching Assistants (TA) Model

TAs in the TA Model:

  • Visit the class on a weekly basis
  • Share your personal story and inspire students to continue pursuing computer science in college or career
  • Meet with your classroom teacher and plan upcoming classes
  • Assist students with their lab work
  • Grade assignments

The TA Model is designed to help teachers with experience leading CS lessons on their own that still need in-class support. TAs help experienced CS teachers add industry exposure, build excitement for CS at their school, and provide a safety net for teachers that are still learning the material. Due to the nature of this partnership, the curricula used in TA Model schools will vary.

While not as time intensive as the Co-Teaching model this role is a significant time commitment.

Consulting Support Model

Volunteers Acting as Consultants for Schools:

  • Communicate regularly with your teacher about the class
  • Assist classroom teacher with questions about curriculum and grading
  • Add value to the class by preparing guest lectures
  • Share your personal story and inspire students to continue pursuing computer science in college or career

The Consulting Support Model is designed to be a resource for teachers confident in running their own CS classes, but would like the help of an industry volunteer to brainstorm new lesson ideas, guest speak, occasionally visit the classroom, and ask questions around new technologies. This is the lightest level of support TEALS offers schools and is rare within the program, but offers an option for volunteers interested in contributing but do not have the time for our more in demand models.