Computers and technology are part of everyday life for all of us; at Gorseybrigg we make computing an integral part of our curriculum.
“I think it's fair to say that personal computers have become the most empowering tool we've ever created. They're tools of communication, they're tools of creativity, and they can be shaped by their user” Bill Gates
At Gorseybrigg Primary School, we want all our pupils to be inspired and engaged by a high quality computing education.
- We offer children the opportunity to study the three strands of computing. Computer Science, Digital Literacy and Information Technology.
- We are committed to promoting depth of knowledge which is supported by the direct teaching of challenging, domain-specific computing vocabulary to enable children to consider and articulate their developing understanding and opinions.
- Our computing curriculum provides a framework for every child to explore the use of technology; experiment with and improve their practical skills and participate successfully as part of a digital community.
- We strive to cultivate a real enjoyment of computing and to support all children to achieve their full potential.
Throughout the academic year, computing lessons are divided into three strands. Computer Science, Information Technology and Digital Literacy. Digital Literacy is the golden thread which runs through the computing curriculum at Gorseybrigg and is closely linked with PSHCE. The first session of each term is dedicated to Digital Literacy from Year 1 to Year 6 and then continues to run throughout the terms alongside weekly computing lessons. Computer Science and Information Technology is taught in 3 half-term blocks.
This subject-blocking offers pupils and teachers the time and focus to delve deeply into the computing skills, knowledge and vocabulary required for high quality learning and teaching. Progression is embedded into our computing curriculum and described in detail in our Computing skills progression map.
We have two computing subject leaders in order to ensure coverage, continuity and progression throughout the whole school. They have a range of joint responsibilities:
- To monitor and evaluate computing teaching and learning
- To manage the computing budget effectively
- To maintain the computing element of the School Improvement Plan
- To liaise and consult with outside agencies, local clusters and community groups
- To support and advise teachers in the planning and delivery of computing lessons
- To maintain and monitor computing resources
- To attend and disseminate training
- To ensure membership of the computing teaching professional body is up to date and used in school
We want all children at our school to make excellent progress, achieve success and find enjoyment in computing. We believe that this subject is essential for our children to engage at every level with society, whether at work or at home. We choose activities and resources to promote active participation by everyone whatever their race, gender, economic status or ability. We strive to meet the needs of those pupils with special educational needs, disabilities, particular gifts and talents and children for whom English is an additional language so that everyone is able to fulfil their potential.
We hope that our pupils’ adult lives continue to be enriched by their competence and understanding of computing and offer our computing curriculum as a foundation for life-long learning.
To achieve our high expectations and fulfil our commitment to excellence, we appreciate how crucial it is to engage with students in order to evaluate the impact of our provision. We regularly conduct pupil voice interviews and act on the outcomes. Using our in-year assessment model, we consider the attainment of individuals and use the results to set pupil targets.
To inform excellence in computing teaching, we intend that teaching staff will develop a deep knowledge of the curriculum. To enable this, subject leaders have access to the National Centre for Computing Education Association and work closely with a Subject Matter Expert. All staff participate in practical training sessions arranged in-house by our computing specialists. Assessment against the curriculum enables us to consider attainment and progress and adjust teaching accordingly, communicating achievement in computing to children’s new teachers. Regular monitoring including lesson observations, book-looks where appropriate and the checking of planning takes place in a supportive atmosphere where the emphasis is on improvement and the sharing of ideas.
We recognise that it is vital to engage parents and families in understanding our Digital Literacy and Computing curriculum and therefore provide information about lessons, help families to provide appropriate resources at home (including offering advice on safety) and listen to parental views and suggestions.
Our aim is to provide our pupils with the computing skills and confidence for life.
We teach our pupils about: how computers and networks work; how to use computers to search for and collect information; basic computer programming. We teach the children how to stay safe and be confident when using computers and the internet and give them the skills to know what to do if they encounter inappropriate content or communication.
Our Key Stage 1 children are taught to:
- Understand what algorithms are, how they are implemented as programs on digital devices, and that programs are executed by following precise and unambiguous instructions
- Create and debug simple programs
- Use logical reasoning to predict the behaviour of simple programs
- Use technology purposefully to create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve digital content
- Recognise common uses of information technology beyond school
- Use technology safely and respectfully, keeping personal information private; identify where to go for help and support when they have concerns about content or contact on the internet or other online technologies
Our Key Stage 2 children are taught to:
- Design, write and debug programs that accomplish specific goals, including controlling or simulating physical systems; solve problems by decomposing them into smaller parts
- Use sequence, selection, and repetition in programs; work with variables and various forms of input and output
- Use logical reasoning to explain how some simple algorithms work and to detect and correct errors in algorithms and programs
- Understand computer networks, including the internet; how they can provide multiple services, such as the World Wide Web, and the opportunities they offer for communication and collaboration
- Use search technologies effectively, appreciate how results are selected and ranked, and be discerning in evaluating digital content
- Select, use and combine a variety of software (including internet services) on a range of digital devices to design and create a range of programs, systems and content that accomplish given goals, including collecting, analysing, evaluating and presenting data and information
- Use technology safely, respectfully and responsibly; recognise acceptable/unacceptable behaviour; identify a range of ways to report concerns about content and contact
We regularly teach the children about online safety and online issues in order to ensure that all of our pupils are responsible and safe users of the World Wide Web and other communication technologies.
Teaching in the Internet age means we must teach tomorrow’s skills today.
- Jennifer Fleming | California State University