Aims and objectives
Computing is changing the lives of everyone. Through teaching Computing we equip children to participate in a rapidly-changing world where work and leisure activities are increasingly transformed by technology. We enable them to find, explore, analyse, exchange and present information. We also focus on developing the skills necessary for children to be able to use information in a discriminating and effective way. Computing skills are a major factor in enabling children to be confident, creative and independent learners.
The aim is to produce learners who are confident and effective users of technology at Devonshire Primary Academy we seek to achieve this aim by enabling children:
●to develop capability in finding, selecting and using information;
●to use technology for effective and appropriate communication;
●to monitor and control events both real and imaginary;
●to apply hardware and software to creative and appropriate uses of information;
●to apply their technological skills and knowledge to their learning in other areas, individually and collaboratively;
●to use their technological skills to develop their language and communication skills;
●to explore their attitudes towards technology and its value to them and society in general. For example, to learn about issues of security, confidentiality and accuracy.
●to deliver the requirements of the National Curriculum as comprehensively as possible and encouraging all children to achieve the highest possible standards of attainment.
●to challenge themselves and share their expertise and talents with others. To inspire and enthuse.
Teaching and learning style
As the aims of Computing are to equip children with the skills necessary to use technology to become independent learners, the teaching style that we adopt is as active and practical as possible. At times we do give children direct instruction on how to use hardware or software in ‘skills’ lessons but we often use technological capabilities to support teaching across the curriculum. So, for example, children might research a history topic by using a CD-ROM, or they might investigate a particular issue on the Internet. Children who are learning science might use the computer to model a problem or to analyse data. We encourage the children to explore ways in which the use of technology can improve their results, for example, how a piece of writing can be edited or how the presentation of a piece of work can be improved by moving text about etc. We actively encourage pupils to choose how best to present their work, relevant to their audience, whether that be text, video, animation, green screen or digital music.
We recognise that all classes have children with widely differing abilities. This is especially true when some children have access to equipment at home, while others do not. We provide suitable learning opportunities for all children by matching the challenge of the task to the ability and experience of the child. We achieve this in a variety of ways, by:
●using a computer for whole class/group demonstrations;
●setting common tasks which are open-ended and can have a variety of responses;
●setting tasks of increasing difficulty (not all children complete all tasks);
●grouping children by ability in the room and setting different tasks for each ability group;
●pairing mixed ability children together to enable the sharing of different experiences;
●providing resources of different complexity that are matched to the ability of the child;
●children feeding back to the class on findings, outcomes of research, etc;
●using classroom assistants to support the work of individual children or groups of children.
ICT curriculum planning
The school uses the Rising Stars (Switched on Computing) scheme of work for ICT (www.switchedoncomputing.co.uk) as the basis for its curriculum planning.
We carry out the curriculum planning for Computing in three phases (long-term, medium-term and short-term). The long-term plan maps the topics that the children study in each term. The subject leader works this out in conjunction with teaching colleagues in each year group, and the children often study Computing as part of their work in other subject areas. Our long-term plan shows how teaching units are distributed across the year groups, and how these fit together to ensure progression and expectation within the curriculum plan.
Our medium-term plans, which we have been adapted from the Switched on Computing scheme, give details of each unit of work for each term. They identify the key learning objectives for each unit of work and stipulate the curriculum time that we devote to it. The Computing subject leader is responsible for reviewing these plans.
The class teacher is responsible for ensuring the short-term plans are adapted and effective for their own class. These plans will list the specific learning objectives of each lesson. The class teacher keeps these individual plans and s/he and the subject leader discuss their strengths and areas for improvement on an informal basis. Planning is also monitored by the Computing Curriculum group on a bi-annual basis.
The topics studied in Computing are planned to build upon prior learning. While we offer opportunities for children of all abilities to develop their skills and knowledge in each unit, we also build planned progression into our scheme of work, so that the children are increasingly challenged as they move up through the school.
Staff are encouraged to be as creative in their approach to Computing as possible. At Devonshire Primary Academy we aim to offer a range of experiences to all pupils during their time with us. Staff are encouraged to allow time for pupils to consolidate their skills in other curriculum areas.
The contribution of ICT to teaching in other curriculum areas
Technology contributes to teaching and learning in all curriculum areas. For example, graphics work links in closely with work in art, and work using databases supports work in mathematics, while the Internet proves very useful for research in humanities subjects such as history and geography. Technology enables children to present their information and conclusions in the most appropriate way.
Technology is a major contributor to the teaching of English. Through the development of keyboard skills and the use of computers, children learn how to edit and revise text, including their own work. They have the opportunity to develop their writing skills by communicating with other people, and they are able to join in discussions with other children. They learn how to improve the presentation of their work by using publishing software.
Pupils are also given opportunities to record their verbal work using voice recording apps and software, present their work in front of green screens or through stop motion animation.
Mathematics and Science
Many technology activities build upon the mathematical and scientific skills of the children. Children can use technology in mathematics and science to collect data, make predictions, analyse results, and present information graphically. They also acquire measuring techniques involving positive and negative numbers, including numbers with decimal places. The internet plays a vital role in researching scientific concepts and also aids recording of experiments for evidence through video and photography.
Personal, social and health education (PSHE) and citizenship
Technology makes a contribution to the teaching of PSHE and citizenship as children learn to work together in a collaborative manner. They develop a sense of global citizenship by using the Internet and e-mail. Through the discussion of moral issues related to electronic communication, children develop a view about the use and misuse of technology. They also gain a knowledge and understanding of the interdependence of people around the world.
E-Safety is also taught through PSHE, where children are reminded of the personal and social risks that can face them online. We also encourage children to make choices in their behaviour and internet use, choosing to report dangers or unacceptable behaviour if they encounter it, without feeling to blame.
Teaching ICT to children with special needs
At Devonshire Primary Academy, we teach Computing to all children, whatever their ability. We provide learning opportunities that are matched to the needs of children with learning difficulties. In some instances the use of technology has a considerable impact on the quality of work that children produce; it increases their confidence and motivation. When planning work in Computing, we can take into account the targets in the children’s Individual Education Plans (IEPs). The use of technology can help children in achieving their targets and progressing in their learning.
Curriculum Overview for Computing and E-safety (Years 1-6)
Foundation Stage Computing
ICT Switched on Early Years – Nursery 2015-2016
6 Units to be covered this year (Starting SPRING 1)
We can take turns – manipulating objects on screen
We have confidence – recording and playing back sounds
We have feelings – taking and displaying photographs (safety link)
We can exercise – using digital timers and thermometers
We are talkers – using video cameras to record video clips
We can understand instructions – controlling kitchen equipment
ICT Switched on Early Years – RECEPTION 2014-2015
AUT 2 Topics –
We can understand instructions - Controlling kitchen equipment (Goldilocks porridge?)
We can take turns - manipulating objects on screen (education city games, turn taking)
We have confidence – recording and playing back sounds (possible Christmas songs link?!)
We are talkers – using video cameras to record video clips
SPRING 1 Topics –
We can drive – investigate everyday technologies
We are DJ’s – controlling digital sound files and videos (Flashing lights, karaoke)
We can listen – using technology to communicate verbally (radio/walkie talkies)
We are digital readers – choosing and opening applications and engaging with digital texts (ORT ipads)
SPRING 2 Topics –
We can exercise – using digital timers and thermometers (health week link)
We can understand messages – controlling and using sound (talking tins)
We can count – programming a programmable toy
We are designers – controlling a remote controlled toy
We are creative – choosing and using tools in an art application
SUMMER 1 Topics –
We are community members – taking and displaying digital photos with recorded sound (photos with talking tins?)
We can blog – communicating with digital text
We can email – using email to communicate
We are game players – opening and closing files
We are shape makers – using light projectors, switching on technology