Computing has become a major part of many industries – from architecture, accounting or business, through to art, music, photography and animation, computing supports and enhances so much of what we do. It is therefore an essential part of a modern curriculum.
Within school, children will get to sample and explore a plethora of online and offline applications as they develop their understanding of computing and how their developing skills belong in modern world. They will develop skills in researching, presenting, creating, problem-solving, optimising, editing and debugging as they learn about Online Safety, Art and Animation, Coding (block based and text based languages), 3D Design and Creative Applications.
In computing we are a paperless subject as much as possible, meaning we don’t produce a lot of work on paper and instead build a digital portfolio, which is largely stored online and accessible from home as well as in school. The applications we use are nearly all accessible for free to anyone with a computer or laptop and projects can be developed in the children’s own time from home if they wish.
In light of recent events, Computing lessons will also serve as the first port of call for children learning how to use and engage with the online learning platform Google Classroom. Computing lessons will be shared through this platform and children will be taught how to access and submit their completed work digitally and remotely. In the event of further lockdown, school closures, prolonged absences or any other reason a child may be unable to attend school in a typical fashion, familiarity with an online learning platform will be of great benefit.
Google Classroom has been chosen due to its ubiquity, ease of use and low-level cost to school and zero cost to parents. It can be accessed through PCs, Macs, tablets, phones, Games Consoles, Smart TVs and more – meaning that all families will need is internet access and their learning can continue.
Computing – Curriculum Recall
In Computing at Berwick Middle School, children will revisit certain topics/software applications each year. This allows every child to recap on their previous learning and ensures new learning takes place from a secure base. In addition, lessons and topics are sequenced in such a way that the children will be able to use skills and assets developed in one topic to enhance their progress in another. For example, animation assets created in the art and animation projects can then be exported from the app and imported into a coding project giving them more or a personalised coding project and allowing them to see the context and benefit of their creations from earlier topics.
Furthermore, where recall and progress has been slower, the children are able to access additional resources and support to help them make accelerated progress to catch their peers back up meaning that those with SEND or other barriers to learning are able to feel that they can access a very similar curriculum and produce projects that are similar in content to their peers – though they may have required a different approach or level of support to get there.
Higher achievers, whose recall and acquisition of skills is advanced, can access more complex and demanding work to allow them to make additional progress. For example, though the majority of Year 7 children might be working through block coding projects with different levels of support, higher ability children could be moving onto advanced coding languages and techniques in a bespoke HTML project. This topic may, in turn, make use of the assets they have created in art, animation, online safety or 3D design projects.