Computing skills are a major factor in enabling children to be confident, creative and independent learners and it is our intention that children have every opportunity available to allow them to achieve this. At St Mary’s Primary School, our computing curriculum is designed around the four key areas, as outlined in the National Curriculum. These are computer science, information technology, digital literacy and online safety. The combination of these areas equips our children with the ability to safely and confidently use a computer.
Our children begin their journey with technology in Early Years, with access to iPads and BeeBots, as well as some lots of role play opportunities with computing equipment. Teachers facilitate children’s curiosity with challenge and modelling how to use the equipment carefully and safely.
In KS1 children continue their journey with the BeeBots and progress to BlueBots, using them more precisely. They learn how to programme a BlueBot to reach a destination and begin to be able to debug when something doesn’t work out the way they imagined. In the computer room they improve their mouse control and learn how to log on and off a computer using their own username and password. They learn about online safety and what to do if they encounter something which makes them feel uncomfortable as well as what personal information is and why it is important we don’t share it with someone on the internet. Coding then progresses from BlueBots onto ‘code.org’ and other computer-based programmes where children learn how to programme a variety of sprites.
In KS2, children continue this coding journey, not only making the sprites move, but interact with each other. Through the Lego Wedo programme, children have the opportunity to create, design and build their own robots which they later go on to programme. As children progress up KS2 the coding becomes more complex and they are able to create basic games with code. Their digital literacy skills are combined with English, Science, History and Geography and work is word processed and presentations are created using PowerPoint. Children learn how to use the hardware we have in school including cameras on ipads, where they are taught how to take and manipulate pictures, showing them that what they view in the media isn’t always accurate. The children are also taught internet safety throughout each year of KS2 themed around the five pillars of ‘Google Internet Legends’. They know how to keep themselves safe online and what to do if they come across something that makes them uncomfortable. KS2 are taught the difference between being a bystander and an upstander and the importance of reporting something they experience happening to themselves or another person. Upper KS2 understand the importance of media balance and appreciate that as they get older, they are more responsible for their online presence and how often they access a variety of forms of media.
The impact of our computing curriculum can not only be seen in displays around school and on the children’s individual computer accounts, but also can be measured by speaking to the children themselves. The teaching of the computing curriculum enables our children to use a computer with confidence.
We measure the impact of our curriculum using the following methods:
- Assessment of pupil discussions about their learning
- Images of the children’s practical learning in a class portfolio
- Children’s work saved onto their individual accounts
- Interviewing the pupils about their learning (pupil voice)
- Class portfolios/ mini mission books are scrutinised and there is the opportunity for a dialogue between teachers to understand their class’s work
- Reporting of standards across the curriculum