At West Kirby Primary School, we aim to enable our pupils to be healthy, ecologically aware, global citizens of the future. Technology is changing the lives of everyone. Through teaching computing, we equip our children to participate in a rapidly changing world where work and leisure activities are increasingly transformed by technology. We believe that computing is a fundamental part of our children’s education to ensure they are prepared for the digital world in which we live.
Through our computing curriculum at West Kirby Primary School, we aim to give our pupils the life-skills that will enable them to embrace and utilise new technology in a socially responsible and safe way in order to flourish. We want our pupils to be able to operate in the 21st century workplace and we want them to know the career opportunities that will be open to them from study computing. We want children to become autonomous, independent users of computing technologies, gaining confidence and enjoyment from their activities. We want the use of technology to support learning across the entire curriculum and to ensure that our computing curriculum is accessible to every child.Not only do we want them to be digitally literate and competent end-users of technology but through our computer science lessons we want them to develop creativity, resilience and problem-solving and critical thinking skills. We want our pupils to have a breadth of experience to develop their understanding of themselves as individuals within their community but also as members of a wider global community and as responsible digital citizens.
We encourage children to embrace technology and to have a life-long love of learning. Through a progressive skills-based curriculum, we aim to develop confident, independent learners who are able to plan, design, create, program and evaluate information, through the use of ICT, ensuring that children become digitally literate to be active, safe participants in the digital world. At West Kirby Primary School, computing is taught in discreet computing lessons. Our scheme of work for Computing is adapted from the ‘Teach Computing’ Curriculum and covers all aspects of the National Curriculum. This scheme was chosen as it has been created by subject experts and based on the latest pedagogical research. It provides an innovative progression framework where computing content (concepts, knowledge, skills and objectives) has been organised into interconnected networks called learning graphs. The curriculum aims to equip young people with the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to thrive in the digital world of today and the future. It can be broken down into 3 strands: computer science, information technology and digital literacy, with the aims of the curriculum reflecting this distinction.
Every lesson in our computing curriculum can be effectively taught using the infrastructure we have in place at school and so that it can meet the needs of all our pupils. Our chosen scheme has been closely referenced against the 2014 National Curriculum attainment targets in order to ensure progression and coverage. Knowledge and skills are mapped across each topic and year group to ensure systematic progression. We are part of the Childnet Digital Leaders Programme which provides pupils with the essential knowledge they need to thrive online in a safe, positive space, and gives them the chance to develop their leadership and communication skills as they teach their whole school community about the online issues that affect young people.
Having discreet lessons means that the children are able to develop depth in their knowledge and skills over the duration of each of their computing topics. Where appropriate, meaningful links will be made between the computing curriculum and the wider curriculum. In computing lessons, the children will use either the iPad or the computer suite in order to access a range of apps and software. Discreet computing lessons will focus on the curriculum skills of information technology, digital literacy and computer science. Summative assessment for all KS2 units will ensure that skills can be measured and evaluated effectively.
A key part of implementing our computing curriculum is to ensure that safety of our pupils is paramount. We take online safety very seriously and we aim to give children the necessary skills to keep themselves safe online. Children have a right to enjoy childhood online, to access safe online spaces and to benefit from all the opportunities that a connected world can bring them, appropriate to their age and stage.
Children build online resilience through the use of the ‘Project Evolve – Education for a Connected World’ framework. The framework aims to support and broaden the provision of online safety education, so that it is empowering, builds resilience and effects positive culture change.
We have an embedded ‘relevant’ and ‘progressive’ Online Safety Curriculum. Issues such as cyberbullying, online wellbeing, screen time/ addiction, the reliability of information and ‘Stanger danger’ are discussed in PSHE lessons and assemblies. Children are taught the SMART rules of online safety, and are taught the skills and knowledge that they may need to keep themselves safe online. We have access to the resources from National Online Safety and deliver Workshops and Assemblies and share regular updates to teach children and their parents about online safety. We distribute a monthly Esafety newsletter to parents, we take part in Safer Internet Day each February to raise awareness within school and the local community about the possible dangers of using the internet and mobile technologies, and to advise on ways in which to reduce risk.
Computing skills are a major factor in enabling children to be confident, creative and independent learners and it is our intention that children have every opportunity available to allow them to achieve this. At the end of each year, pupils have developed their computing skills, and have gained a new understanding of online safety issues and how to keep themselves safe online.
We encourage our children to enjoy and value the computing curriculum we deliver. We will constantly ask the WHY behind their learning and not just the HOW. We want learners to discuss, reflect and appreciate the impact computing has on their learning, development and well being. Finding the right balance with technology is key to an effective education and a healthy life-style. We feel the way we implement computing helps children realise the need for the right balance and one they can continue to build on in their next stage of education and beyond.
We encourage regular discussions between staff and pupils to best embed and understand this. The way pupils showcase, share, celebrate and publish their work will best show the impact of our curriculum. We also look for evidence through reviewing pupil’s knowledge and skills digitally through tools like The Office 365 Package, our VLE and observing learning regularly. Through discussion and feedback, children talk enthusiastically about their computing lessons and speak about how they love learning on the computer. Children across the school articulate well about the potential risks of being online, and can talk about ways to keep safe.
Pupils know how and why technology is used in the outside world, and in the workplace. They know about different ways that computers can be used. Progress of our computing curriculum is demonstrated through outcomes and the record of coverage in the process of achieving these outcomes Pupils use acquired vocabulary in computing, including coding, lessons. They have the skills to use technology independently, for example accessing age-appropriate software and games in EYFS and using a range of computer software independently in KS1 and KS2. Ultimately, the school vision is achieved - to create a happy, caring community where all members are included, secure and confident, have an equal opportunity to fulfil their potential and to develop the skills necessary to make a valuable contribution to society, both now and in the future.
Computer Subject Leader: Mrs McCann