What do we intend children to learn?
We aim to instil a sense of enjoyment around using technology and to develop pupil’s appreciation of its capabilities and the opportunities technology offers to create, manage, organise and collaborate. Tinkering with software and programs forms part of our ethos . It helps to develop pupils’ confidence when encountering new technology, which is a vital skill in the ever evolving and changing landscape of technology. Through our curriculum, we intend for pupils not only to be digitally competent and have a range of transferable skills at a suitable level for the future workplace, but also to be responsible online citizens.
How do we teach computing?
Our pupils obtain the prerequisite skills for computing through the Early Years Foundation stage. At this young age children are encouraged to operate simple equipment through carefully selected resources available within the continuous provision. Playing with old style telephones, typewriters and mechanical toys as well as familiarity with tablets, laptops, cameras and voice recorders are all part and parcel of building a solid foundation in computing. Giving instructions, understanding arrows and direction and categorising data are all taught in a practical and fun way without a screen in sight! By allowing children time to regularly access technological equipment independently, they will develop a much deeper understanding.
In years one to six, this solid foundation is quickly built upon through the teaching of the Kapow Primary computing scheme of work which enables pupils to meet the end of Key Stage Attainment targets outlined in the National curriculum
The National curriculum purpose of study states:
The core of computing is computer science, in which pupils are taught the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work, and how to put this knowledge to use through programming. Building on this knowledge and understanding, pupils are equipped to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of content. Computing also ensures that pupils become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.
Therefore, our curriculum is designed with three strands which run throughout:
- Computer science
- Information Technology
- Digital Literacy
Our curriculum is organised into five key areas, creating a cyclical route through which pupils can develop their computing knowledge and skills as we understand the importance of revisiting and building on previous learning:
- Computer systems and networks
- Creating Media
- Data Handling
- Online Safety
The computing curriculum is taught to our mixed age classes in a rolling two year program with units including Computing Systems and Networks -What is a computer?, Programming -Algorithms and debugging and Data Handling - International Space Station for our key stage one children. In key stage two, they study units such as Computing Systems and Networks - Collaborative Learning, Creating media - History of Computers and Programming - Computational Thinking.
There are three units entitled Skills Showcase which all children will have the opportunity to take part in across the two year rolling plan. The Skills Showcase gives the children the chance to combine and apply skills and knowledge gained from a range of the five key areas to produce a specific outcome.
It is essential that our pupils have the knowledge and skills to be able to keep themselves safe online. This key area is covered in detail throughout the curriculum and is a common theme that runs through every unit.
Also on Safer Internet Day in February each year we have a dedicated online safety day where the online safety units are taught across the whole school.
Giving online safety the importance that it deserves, we also have a committee of school E-safety champions who are made up of children from years 1-6. They meet frequently to discuss relevant issues including the importance of the online safety curriculum and are on hand to promote online safety across the school. Recently they organised a poster competition to 'spread the word' about being safe online.
In September 2022 we received the Leicestershire County Council E Safety Award
How do we know how well our pupils are doing?
Each unit of work has knowledge organiser which teachers use to help the children become familiar with the curriculum content and enable them to take responsibility for their own learning. A copy of each unit’s knowledge organiser is sent home to parents too.
Each unit has an end of unit assessment which is completed and documented in the children’s foundation subject books.
Work created on a computer and online is filed on the shared drive under the unit title and additional work is created is printed and evidenced in the children’s foundation subject books in key stage 2 and in a floor book in key stage 1. This is used alongside teachers observations and formative assessment in class to assess children’s understanding and skill progression using the Kapow Computing assessment grid.
Learning in computing will be meaningful and enjoyed across the whole school. Children will use digital and technological vocabulary accurately alongside progression of their technical skills. They will be confident using a range of hardware and software and will produce high-quality purposeful work showing readiness for the next stage of their education. Children will be familiar with the digital world which will extend beyond school and will be confident and respectful digital citizens going on to lead happy and healthy digital lives.