At Gosbecks Primary School our computing curriculum focuses on a progression of skills in computing systems and networks creating media, data and information, programming and internet safety. We want children to be digitally literate and competent end-users of technology. Through our computing lessons we want them to develop creativity, resilience, problem-solving and critical thinking skills. We understand that computing has deep links with mathematics, science and design and technology. Our curriculum makes links to these and other areas which ensures that pupils become digitally literate. Our curriculum is shaped by our schools’ vision to enable children to achieve their potential and ‘Be the Best You Can Be’. By the time pupils leave Gosbecks, they will have gained key knowledge to enable them to become active, responsible participants in the digital world.
We teach the National Curriculum using the 'Teach Computing' curriculum. This curriculum has a scheme of work for each year group which builds upon the skills learned in previous years. This ensures that knowledge is built on year by year and sequenced appropriately to maximise learning for all children. Even in our mixed age classes, children are taught the appropriate knowledge and skills for their age group.
Pupils are introduced to a wide range of technology including Beebots, iPads, laptops and interactive whiteboards which allow them to continually improve and develop their ideas and skills. The curriculum is enhanced by other resources such as Discovery Education, DB Primary and our PSHE Scarf scheme of work.
The sequence of learning develops pupils’ understanding of how digital technology and other computational systems are designed, programmed and operated. As pupils progress through the school and build upon their computational thinking skills they then feel confident in drawing upon familiar and unfamiliar technology and software. Our approach to the curriculum results in a relevant, engaging, and high-quality computing education. The quality of children’s learning is evidenced in online folders and their books. Evidence such as this is used to feed into teachers’ future planning, and teachers are able to revisit misconceptions and knowledge. Lessons are scaffolded to support varied paces of learning and ensures all pupils make good progress from their starting points.
Despite computing not being explicitly mentioned within the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) statutory framework, there are many opportunities for young children to use technology to solve problems and produce creative outcomes. In particular, many areas of the framework provide opportunities for pupils to develop their ability to use computational thinking effectively. Children in our EYFS use Beebots, IPADs and laptops to begin their early understanding of algorithms and look at how technology is used in our lives.
From EYFS through to KS2 pupils are taught how to use digital technology safely, respectfully and responsibly. Online safety is taught within each computing unit as well as in PSHE and during enrichment days. Younger pupils are regularly taught what to do if something makes them feel uncomfortable whilst using technology. As our pupils progress through the school, they learn the importance of keeping personal information private. Through our curriculum, we give our pupils the ability to recognise differences between acceptable and unacceptable behaviour online and how to approach this. Online safety procedures are communicated with all staff and parents.
As part of information technology, children learn to use and express themselves and develop their ideas through computing for example writing and presenting as well as exploring art and design using multimedia.
Within digital literacy, children develop practical skills in the safe use of software and devices and the ability to apply these skills to solving relevant, worthwhile problems for example understanding safe use of internet, networks and email.
In computer science, we teach children to understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation. They learn to analyse problems in computational terms and have repeated practical experience in writing computer programs in order to solve such problems. Time in the curriculum and resources are planned to help this progression in knowledge. For example, children learn how to code bee-bots in EYFS and then begin to code using block coding and Scratch.
At Gosbecks Primary School, we also believe that computing enhances our teaching and learning in invaluable ways and so we aim to use our computing skills in as many subjects as possible, allowing our pupils to recognise the benefits of becoming digitally literate. We also teach a progression of computing vocabulary to support children in their understanding.
The success of the curriculum itself will be assessed via the analysis of yearly progress data, lesson observations and skills audits. This will then inform future adaptions of the scheme of work and help to ensure that progression is evident throughout school.
In order to demonstrate that we have accomplished our aims, pupils should:
- Be enthusiastic and confident in their approach towards computing.
- Present as competent and adaptable ‘Computational Thinkers’ who are able to use identified concepts and approaches in all of their learning.
- Be able to identify the source of problems and work with perseverance to ‘debug’ them.
- Create and evaluate their own project work.
- Have a secure understanding of the positive applications and specific risks associated with a broad range of digital technology.
- Transition to secondary school with a keen interest in the continued learning of this subject.