"What a computer is to me, is the most remarkable tool that we have ever come up with. It's the equivalent of a bicycle for our minds." - Steve Jobs
St Francis de Sales aims to provide an environment where technology is integrated into all aspects of school life. We will do this in a way which actively supports and promotes learning, helping all to make links to the wider world, whilst preparing everyone for the challenge of a rapidly developing and changing technological environment. Our vision is to embrace any existing technology available to us continuously evolve with any advances made in new technology in the future so that pupils become digitally literate - able to express themselves and develop their ideas through ICT.
Working in collaboration with Hi -Impact (leading experts in providing innovative IT support and education to schools around the country) our computing curriculum maximises the impact and effectiveness of technology in improving pupils' learning and drives learning throughout all areas of our curriculum.
In St Francis de Sales, our Computing curriculum aims to allow pupils to:
- Enjoy using information technology and tackle all applications with confidence and a sense of achievement and purpose.
- Develop practical skills in the use of information technology and the ability to apply these skills to the solving of relevant and worthwhile problems.
- Understand the capabilities and limitation of information technology and implications and consequences of its use.
- Use information technology as a tool appropriately across the curriculum to support and enrich their learning.
- Understand the importance of online safety so they are able to work safely and sensibly.
Computing in St Francis de Sales delivers a clear and effective, cross-curricular scheme of work that provides coverage in line with the National Curriculum and has been designed to reflect our context and community Computing is taught across three main strands: computer science, digital literacy and information technology.
Children learn to use and develop their ideas through ICT for example writing and presenting as well as exploring art and design using multimedia. Many cross-curricula opportunities are identified and exploited when possible so pupils appreciate the wider application of their learning. For example, whilst studying the landmarks of Merseyside in Geography, our Year 3 children are able to use iPads to research using a search engine to create a presentation using the Shadow PuppetEdu app. Additionally, Enrichment Days enhance learning for all pupils. In these, new and exciting applications for hardware and software are explored and experimented with. For example, Year 4 children are able to explore the digestive system using health simulation software.
The experts from hi Impact teach computer science. Children are taught to design, write and debug programs and are able to use their coding skills to make their own interactive stories, games and computer-generated art. Children are faced with more difficult programming challenges as their skillset progresses.
Online Safety is an important part of computing and has days dedicated to it such as Internet Safety Day plus extra sessions are taught to ensure that the importance of E-Safety resonates with the children when they use the internet.
We use a number of ways to measure and assess the impact of our intent and implementation. This helps us refine and adapt our planning further, which, in turn, improves the quality of teaching and learning.
We measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:
- Termly pupil discussions and interviews with the subject lead
- Termly learning walks taken by the computing lead to gain an accurate picture of the children’s understanding and knowledge and to ensure progression and cohesion throughout Years 3-6.
- Teacher voice is obtained formally each year, alongside informal meetings throughout the year.
- Lesson observations and drop-ins on a termly basis by the Computing lead, allow us to ensure our school assessment policy is being followed by computing teachers.
- Knowledge investigators are completed at the start and end of the year to assess progress and the retention of knowledge and understanding.
- Continual formative assessment takes place via questioning and observation to assess pupils’ understanding and generate individual and class hotspots (target objectives).
- The Code Studio tracking system is used by the computing teachers in every lesson to summatively assess where the children are in the lesson progression.
This presentation shows the standards and progress of pupils from Y3 to Y6 via our identified "Golden Threads" of programming and coding in Computing