At Fowey School, our role when providing this computing curriculum is to prepare pupils with the skills to manage an ever-changing and increasingly technological world.
We aim to provide pupils with the confidence, skills and curiosity to take on computing challenges, develop their own coding programs and to fully understand the digital footprint they leave on the world. We understand that computing is now part of many industries and that pupils must have secure computing knowledge in order to open up as many opportunities as possible in later life. We want to equip pupils with the knowledge and skills to keep themselves safe online and the tools they will need to support them if something makes them feel unsafe.
Teaching and Learning
We implement our curriculum through Purple Mash. This is an online program that supports the teaching of computing in sequential, small steps. Teaching is centred around three key strands of learning: Computer Science, Digital Literacy and Information Technology. Teaching provides regular opportunities for pupils to code and debug, explore networks and databases and create in a variety of different programs using a range of computing devices. Pupils have the opportunity to explore a range of different software throughout their time at Fowey School, building their knowledge of how to use technology in a purposeful way. In addition, they receive regular opportunities to discuss appropriate behaviour online and how to identify and seek support if they feel unsafe.
We at Fowey School, are firm believers that high quality teaching will enable pupils to engage in high quality learning. We therefore ensure that pupils are taught the skills they need to be successful in a series of small steps. These are taught through the use of exploration, trial and error, shared experiences and modelling. Teachers lead pupils to a place of confidence where they feel able to challenge themselves to apply new skills, solve problems and think about alternative approaches.
Each half term pupils explore either one or two units of computing in detail, building on skills they have acquired in previous year groups or terms. Plans are sequential and require learners to put their developing skills into practical use. When revisiting units, pupils demonstrate their understanding before embarking on the next part of their learning journey. This helps to ensure they have the fundamental knowledge and skills needed to be successful in the lesson and that information and skills are retained.
We utilise two main assessment tools in computing. Following each session set as a ‘2Do’ on Purple Mash, teachers can mark the work based on the set learning objective, success criteria and National Curriculum objective. The work they produce and their participation within the lesson will inform the teacher’s judgement. This demonstrates pupils’ journeys throughout each unit of work. The folder of work is then used by the teacher to assess each pupil using a ‘below, ‘working towards’, ‘expected’ or ‘greater depth’ judgement which is recorded on INSIGHT (whole school assessment tracker) at the end of each term. This is monitored by the subject leader and the senior leadership team.
Computing planning follows the Purple Mash program ensuring that lessons are taught in a sequential system that develops skills and knowledge outlined in the national curriculum over time. Purple Mash units are mapped out across the academic year for Y1-Y6 to ensure there are opportunities for pupils to build upon their current knowledge from previous years and for them to deepen their knowledge through planned, purposeful learning.
Pupils are encouraged to recall and use previous learning whilst learning new knowledge. The progression of knowledge and skills is divided into three main areas of computing: computer science, digital literacy and information technology.
Carefully considered investments are made in hardware including smartboards and desktop computers for Year 5 and Year 6 classrooms as well as a set of Surface Go devices for each year group in Year 3 and 4. Each key stage has allocated devices that are maintained by CELT contractors. We are continually improving and reviewing the use of devices to ensure pupils have the appropriate tools to access their learning.
Furthermore, staff also make use of purchased software including Tapestry, TT Rockstars, Spelling Shed, Accelerated Reader, OneDrive and eSchools to support teaching and learning and deliver a high quality, well-resourced curriculum.
The teaching of computing is split into three key strands: computer science, digital literacy and information technology.
Pupils will develop their understanding of algorithms through coding units. They will learn how to create algorithms, debug programs and develop their logical reasoning skills to make predictions. They will develop an understanding of computer networks including the Internet.
The digital literacy strand of each unit will include learning about how to stay safe online in an increasingly technological world. Pupils will learn how to use the internet safely and respectfully and how to identify and report any concerns they may have. This is explicitly taught in online safety units at the beginning of each academic year but is also weaved into all remaining units taught.
The information technology strand of each unit will develop pupils’ understanding of how to use search engines effectively and acquire an ability to identify reliable, trusted information. They will also use technology purposefully through a range of programs to design, create, present, collect and evaluate information in a range of ways.