The digital age has seen the web, interactive whiteboards, virtual learning environments, video conferencing, blogs, wikis, podcasts, video and mobile devices have a transformative impact on both learning and teaching. Using technology draws on and enhances pupils’ digital skills, and has opened up subject areas previously unavailable to many pupils.
The new national curriculum for computing has been developed to equip young people in England with the foundational skills, knowledge and understanding of computing they will need for the rest of their lives. Through the new programme of study for computing, students will learn how computers and computer systems work, they will design and build programs, they will develop their ideas using technology, and create a range of digital content.
The Royal Society has identified three distinct strands within computing, each of which is complementary to the others with each component being essential in preparing pupils to thrive in an increasingly digital world.
- Computer science is the scientific and practical study of computation: what can be computed, how to compute it, and how computation may be applied to the solution of problems.
- Information technology is concerned with how computers and telecommunications equipment work, and how they may be applied to the storage, retrieval, transmission and manipulation of data.
- Digital literacy is the ability to effectively, responsibly, safely and critically navigate, evaluate and create digital artefacts using a range of digital technologies.
The creation of digital artefacts will be integral to much of the learning of computing. Digital artefacts can take many forms, including digital images, computer programs, spreadsheets, 3D animations and this booklet.
The computing curriculum brings new teaching opportunities to sit alongside those familiar from the ICT programme of study. There is an increased emphasis on computer science; not only on how to use technology, but on how to make it and how it works. Planning needs to bring together the three strands of computing (CS, IT and DL) and there are many opportunities to have exciting and creative lessons whilst exploring computational theory ( Naace 2006 – 2014).
At Ercall Wood we cater for all these needs by developing a curriculum that allows students to explore computing, practice skills and develop ideas about how to use computers and ICT to enhance their social, economic, cultural and moral wellbeing. Through computational thinking students start to think like a computer scientist. Understanding how computers work and being able to use them creatively gives pupils the power to shape the world around them.
What will I learn? What will I learn?
Key Stage 3: Year 7 students are introduced to Computer Science through programming Scratch and Kodu. Digital Literacy is catered for through a project on internet safety and the use of spreadsheets.
Key Stage 4: is currently split into two groups for Year 10 with one group studying for the ECDL qualification. The other group are undertaking the WJEC GCSE in Computer Science. The majority of Year 11 students are completing their studies in the ECDL qualification whilst the remainder of the year are studying the Edexcel GCSE in Computer Science.
How will I learn?
Computer Science (ICT) will be taught 1 x 100 minute lessons every 2 weeks at both Key Stages for Years 7, 8, 10 & 11. Year 9 students have 2 x 100 minute lessons every 2 weeks. Year 10 option students receive three 1 x 100 minute lessons every 2 weeks.
Students are set according to results in primary school and on general performance in Secondary School.
The department is committed to ensuring all students have equal access to computing facilities. In order to improve their success and allow them the opportunity to extend their knowledge through practice, every night after school we hold a one hour supervised open session. The schemes of work have been structured to improve motivation and extend pupil skills and knowledge. Staff members are on hand to assist students who need extra assistance.