Our Computing Leads
I have always held a keen interest in ICT, a subject that I chose as part of my options in secondary school for GCSE’s and then A-Levels. After being accepted to University my course was a 3 year ICT course with qualified teacher status for KS2 and KS3. This enabled me the opportunity during my placements to teach the range of primary subjects as well as teaching ICT full time in a secondary school setting. It was here that I realised that we have the opportunity to do so much more in primary school for the children in terms of developing their computing skills. I have always believed that computers are not only a huge part of the present but will only become a bigger part of the future, alongside this belief is that children have already learnt many of the required skills before they even embark on their primary school computing curriculum. Therefore, our challenge is develop a curriculum that builds on the children’s knowledge and gives them opportunity to experience and develop new skills to enable them to succeed in a rapidly changing digital world. Alongside this, I see a crucial part of my role as being able to develop and lead a culture of digital safety and safeguarding which allows children to understand and manage their own safety online, building awareness and knowing where to go for help if things go wrong.
Our offer to our children
We are confident that we deliver a high-quality computing education equipping children to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world. Computing has deep links with mathematics, science and design and technology, and provides insights into both natural and artificial systems. The core of computing is computer science, in which pupils are taught the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work and how to put this knowledge to use through programming. Building on this knowledge and understanding, pupils are equipped to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of content. Computing also ensures that pupils become digitally literate “ able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology “ at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.
The national curriculum for computing aims to ensure that all pupils:
- can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation
- can analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems
- can evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems
- are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology
Three years ago in 2016, Miss Iles was employed as a Computing Teaching Apprentice. Her development throughout her time at Parkgate has allowed the standard of the computing to increase and allowed teachers the opportunity to develop their own knowledge and computing skills.
After much evaluation and research, we decided, as a starting point to purchase the Rising Stars scheme 'Switched on Computing'.
As a school we felt this gave us the ability to:
- deliver a clearly progression of skills from EYFS to Year 6
- Support teachers of all levels of experience with step by step planning
- Provide a complete coverage of the computing programme of study to deliver a broad and balanced curriculum
Fast forward 2 years and in the summer of 2018, confident in the assessment of children and their development of skills we invested heavily in the infrastructure of Computing across our school.
Spending in excess of £50,000 we enhanced our networks, upgraded servers, purchased new mobile devices and also replaced all of the interactive boards across the school for a greater consistency between classrooms.
With a future-proof network able to handle the rigours of the 21st century our next step was to further enhance and tailor our Computing curriculum to the needs of the children.
What did Computing look like in 2018?
|In Key Stage 1 children:||In Key Stage 2:|
This academic year sees the introduction of Virtual Reality. We are excited to continue to 'bring the curriculum to life' with our class set of headsets that have the ability to transport children to far away lands.