Subject co-ordinators: Mrs Dwyer and Mr Finch
We strive for all children to develop a strong, flexible knowledge of computational thinking so they can better understand the ever-changing world of technology. Using the Teach Computing scheme as a structure, teaching is planned to create deep links across the curriculum, through units on: systems and networks; creating media; data and information; programming. Learning is sequenced to develop mastery of skills and knowledge, and combined with enrichment opportunities such as physical computing, working with Microsoft and having lunch with people in industry. From their entry to school in Reception to when they leave in Year 6, our approach to Computing ensure that pupils become digitally literate at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.
There are three strands to the computing curriculum:
- Design, write and debug programs that accomplish specific goals, including controlling or simulating physical systems; solve problems by decomposing them into smaller parts.
- Use logical reasoning to explain how some simple algorithms work and to detect and correct errors in algorithms and programs.
- Understand computer networks including the internet; how they can provide multiple services, such as the world wide web; and the opportunities they offer for communication and collaboration.
- Use sequence, selection, and repetition in programs; work with variables and various forms of input and output.
- Use technology safely, respectfully and responsibly; recognise acceptable/unacceptable behaviour; identify a range of ways to report concerns about content and contact.
- Use search technologies effectively, appreciate how results are selected and ranked, and be discerning in evaluating digital content.
- Select, use and combine a variety of software (including internet services) on a range of digital devices to design and create a range of programs, systems and content that accomplish given goals, including collecting, analysing, evaluating and presenting data and information.
Children are challenged throughout the computing curriculum at St. Polycarp’s. Children develop their fluency and accuracy in touch-typing and are taught valuable keyboard skills and shortcuts to ensure efficiency. Programming across the year groups allows progression of skills and ensures for problem solving, resilience and an ability to ‘think outside the box’ during debugging.
Encouraging computational thinking allows children to work through fluency tasks to practise their skills, consolidate their learning and apply the skills in a wider context.
Fast-paced lessons in these small steps ensure children can work at their own pace through challenges. Opportunities are provided for individual and collaborative work where every member of the team is encouraged to contribute; be it a research project or writing a program for a robot.
Industry experts visit the school to provide bespoke lessons in computing. Lego Robotics, Jaguar Cars, Legoland and Microsoft provide workshops for children to have hands on experience of computing in its wider context. Computing is included in part of a STEM day when a team of experts provide their time and resources for activities in all of the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects.
E-Safety is crucial to our curriculum and is taught during every computing lesson. Standalone lessons are provided to ensure that the children understand and are fully aware of how to keep themselves safe online.