Computing replaces Information and Communication Technology (ICT), with a greater focus on programming, rather than operating programs. Developing computing skills are essential in order that children can access the modern world. Technology surrounds us and is developing at an ever-increasing pace. In order to equip our children for this, we must develop their critical thinking skills and encourage an exposure to a range of technology so that they may adapt to new technologies as they arise.
The Computing Curriculum aims to ensure that all pupils can understand and apply the most important principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation. In other words, it gives children the necessary skills to break down a problem, predict what will happen and use logic to find a solution through practical experience.
This involves children being taught Computer Science, which includes the art of programming and coding from Years 1-6 as well as in the Foundation Stage. Computing is taught both explicitly and discretely, where it underpins lessons in other areas of the curriculum.
Computer Science is taught in its simplest form by playing operational games like 'Teacher says', 'Everybody do this', 'Follow the Leader', etc. This ensures that children understand the need to follow instructions and listen to commands. They would then progress to looking at physical objects like Beebots and remote-controlled cars in cross-curricular learning. In addition, children will also be encouraged to use class computers where the children can progressively apply their computing skills.
Key Stage 1
Children will be learning what algorithms are, which will not always involve computers. When explained as "a set of instructions", these ideas can be illustrated using recipes, or by breaking down the steps of children's morning routines. But they will also be creating and debugging simple programs of their own, developing logical reasoning skills and taking their first steps in using devices to create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve digital content.
Key Stage 2
Computing is taught through discreet programming lessons using software where the children learn about data, algorithms, repetition, iteration and computer networks. Children will be creating and debugging more complicated programs with specific goals and understanding concepts like variables and sequence, selection and repetition in programs. They will be developing their logical reasoning skills and learning to use websites and other internet services. This will enable children to develop an understanding of the principles of Computer Science by promoting and developing their computational thinking.
Our Year 6 children work with the Villa Foundation to further develop their understanding and to apply their knowledge and skills in a real life and enjoyable context.
Creative use of IT
This involves children's purposeful use of digital technologies across the curriculum to create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve digital content, as well as recognise common uses of information technology beyond school.
This involves the teaching of ‘eSafety’ where children are taught to use technology safely and respectfully, keep personal information private and evaluate the internet content for suitability and report any inappropriate webpages to staff and parents. We hold regular family "online safety" days to encourage the whole family to get involved. Children are encouraged to communicate ideas and information in a variety of forms using equipment and computer software to enhance their learning. The staff and children use a range of technology like laptops, digital cameras and other IT devices throughout the school.
Hodge Hill values the use of evidence-based research and are excited to be part of the Gender Balancing research programme in collaboration with Raspberry Pi. This programme is to encourage girls to develop an interest in computing and to ultimately increase the number of young women who choose to do Computer Science at GCSE and A Level.