Computing

Intent

In line with the National Curriculum (2014) for Computing, our aim is to provide a high-quality computing education which equips children to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world. The curriculum will teach children key knowledge about how computers and computer systems work, and how they are designed and programmed. Learners will have the opportunity to gain an understanding of computational systems of all kinds, whether or not they include computers.

By the time they leave Norwood children will have gained key knowledge and skills in the three main areas of the computing curriculum: computer science (programming and understanding how digital systems work), information technology (using computer systems to store, retrieve and send information) and digital English (evaluating digital content and using technology safely and respectfully). The objectives within each strand support the development of learning across the key stages, ensuring a solid grounding for future learning and beyond. At Norwood, our children gain a great understanding of E-Safety and we are constantly reviewing this in light of current events. We are always looking at further opportunities to teach Computing across the curriculum.

Implementation

Children review their successes in achieving the lesson objectives at the end of every session and this skills and knowledge ‘REWIND’ at the start of every new lesson. At Norwood, computing planning often links to engaging contexts in other subjects and topics. We have twelve laptops per year group from Years 3 to 6, a class set of Android tablets and a class set of iPads. to ensure that all year groups have the opportunity to use a range of devices and programs for many purposes across the wider curriculum, as well as in discrete computing lessons. Employing cross-curricular links motivates pupils and supports them to make connections and remember the steps they have been taught.

The implementation of the curriculum also ensures a balanced coverage of computer science, information technology and digital English. The children will have experiences of all three strands in each year group, but the subject knowledge imparted becomes increasingly specific and in depth, with more complex skills being taught, thus ensuring that learning is built upon. For example, children in Key Stage 1 learn what algorithms are, which leads them to the design stage of programming in Key Stage 2, where they design, write and debug programs, explaining the thinking behind their algorithms.

Impact

Our approach to the curriculum results in a fun, engaging, and high-quality Computing education. Evidence such as this is used to feed into teachers’ future planning, and as a topic-based approach continues to be developed, teachers are able to revisit misconceptions and knowledge gaps in computing when teaching other curriculum areas. This supports varied paces of learning and ensures all pupils make good progress.

Much of the subject-specific knowledge developed in our Computing lessons equip pupils with experiences which will benefit them in secondary school, further education and future workplaces.

From research methods, use of presentation and creative tools and critical thinking, Computing at Norwood gives children the building blocks that enable them to pursue a wide range of interests and vocations in the next stage of their lives.

By the end of a pupil’s time in Norwood, we want our children in Computing to:

  • Design, write and debug programs that accomplish specific goals, including controlling physical systems or simulating physical systems (e.g. robots, motors, sensors or animation of the water cycle or a simulation of how the moon orbits the Earth).
  • More efficiently write programs that include repetition, sequence and selection.
  • Use variables in programs (e.g. timer, score, health bar).
  • Work with a wider range of inputs and outputs (e.g. motors, motion sensors, noise sensors).
  • Use logical reasoning to enhance algorithms in some way (e.g. to make a game more or less challenging).
  • Solve increasingly complex problems by decomposing them into smaller parts (e.g. if creating a maze game, break the task up into a number of steps: design and create the maze, design and then program the main sprite or character, program other characters or features of the game).
  • Be discerning in evaluating digital content with an understanding of how search engines select and rank results.
  • Create digital content and programs by combining different software and different digital devices (e.g. combining images and text on a word processing document, combining video, audio and images in a movie or presentation, creating an animation on Scratch with music, sound effects, text).
  • Use digital devices to collect data and then use it to answer questions or solve problems (e.g. using data loggers or sensors).
  • Know that computer simulations are used to model a real-world or imaginary situation (e.g. NASA simulating take-offs and landings; responses to natural disasters).
  • Know that computer networks, like the internet, provide lots of services and offer opportunities for communication and collaboration.

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