“We need technology in every classroom and in every student and teacher's hand, because it is the pen and paper of our time, and it is the lens through which we experience much of our world.” - David Warlick
At St Francis Catholic Primary School we believe that Computing plays an important role in the education of all children. We aim to give each pupil the opportunity to apply and develop their computational thinking (concepts and approaches) across a wide range of situations and tasks. Pupils are encouraged to develop a confident and safe approach to Computing, with the understanding of the capabilities and flexibility of their resources. With the knowledge that Computing will undoubtedly continue to form a major part in the children’s life at home, in further education and places of work, we ensure that Computing lessons at St Francis equip children with effective and transferable life skills.
Our scheme of work for Computing is heavily adapted from the ‘Teach Computing’ Curriculum and covers all aspects of the National Curriculum as well as the needs of our children. This scheme was chosen as it has been created by subject experts and based on the latest pedagogical research. It provides an innovative progression framework where computing content (concepts, knowledge, skills and objectives) have been adapted to fit our St Francis curriculum model. This equips our children with the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to thrive in the digital world of today and the future. Our curriculum can be broken down into 3 strands: computer science, information technology and digital literacy, with the aims of the curriculum reflecting this distinction.
Computing is taught from EYFS to Year 6. In EYFS it is about introducing the building blocks of computational thinking and getting familiar with simple programming toys. Then from Year 1 to Year 6 this is taught more discreetly each half term through either weekly sessions or one or two day projects depending on the nature of the work. Each class has at least a term of teaching from our highly trained computing expert - Mr Bleazard.
A key part of implementing our computing curriculum is ensuring that the safety of our pupils is paramount. We take online safety very seriously and we aim to give children the necessary skills to keep themselves safe online. Children build online resilience through the use of the ‘Project Evolve – Education for a Connected World’ framework. The framework is mapped out across the school from EYFS to Year 6 and across the year either being taught as discrete lessons or incorporated into the weekly Computing lesson.
To help with our implementation of the Computing curriculum, we have a variety of hardware available including more than a class set of chromebooks, ipads, visualisers and interactive whiteboards. We regularly liaise with our fellow trust schools and the local Computing hub to loan crumbles, beebots and micro bits. Children are very familiar with the Chromebooks and access the full Google Education Suite accounts, which they can access in school and remotely.
Every KS2 class has at least two digital leaders who learn to become experts for their class, meeting regularly to improve their coding skills and learn key concepts for their classes projects. They are also leads in storing and maintaining equipment, helping class teachers set up and leading on whole school internet safety projects.
How we teach computing is underpinned by our 12 principles of Computing Pedagogy laid out by the NCCE. This can be found here
These documents explain our coverage and progression in Computing teaching. As with all our curriculum documents, these are live and working so will change and be adapted to meet the needs of our children and differing cohorts.
Our learners enjoy the impact Computing has on their learning, development and wellbeing. They learn to find the right balance with technology for an effective education and a healthy life-style. We feel the way we implement Computing helps children realise the need for the right balance and one they can continue to build on in their next stage of education and beyond.
The way pupils showcase, share, celebrate and publish their work shows the impact of our curriculum. Progress of our Computing curriculum is demonstrated through outcomes and the record of coverage in the process of achieving these outcomes. We regularly look for evidence through reviewing pupil’s knowledge and skills digitally through our digital portfolios on Google Classroom, Google Drive and observing learning. Pupil voice shows children talk confidently about their work and understand the importance of online safety.
The impact of the curriculum can be seen in pupils leaving St Francis as:
- Enthusiastic and confident towards Computing.
- Competent and adaptable ‘Computational Thinkers’.
- Able to identify the source of problems and work with perseverance to ‘debug’ them.
- Create and evaluate their own work for a range of purposes and audiences.
- Secure and safe when using a broad range of digital technology.
- Transition to secondary school with a keen interest in the continued learning of this subject.
Computing Learning Spring 2023
Computing Enrichment and E-Safety Work 2022-23
Check out our Digital Leader page here