Blackfell Primary School

Computing

Intent

At Blackfell Primary School, we believe that Computing is an integral part of preparing children to live in a world where technology is continuously and rapidly evolving. Computing has many links across the curriculum: literacy, mathematics, science, art, history, geography, PSHE and design and technology. Computing ensures that pupils become digitally literate, able to use and understand elements of technology, express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology (ICT) at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world. We also incorporate one unit of office skills from Key stage 1 upwards whereby children are able to access Microsoft Word, Publisher and Powerpoint, this allows for cross curricular publishing to be completed with greater confidence and prepares children for experiences of technology in their future.

The aims of teaching computing in our school are:

Computer Science:

  • To enable children to become confident coders.
  • To create opportunities for collaborative and independent learning.
  • To develop children’s understanding of technology and how it is constantly evolving.

Safe and Responsible Use of Technology:

  • To enable a safe computing environment through appropriate computing behaviours.
  • To allow children to explore a range of digital devices.
  • To promote pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.

Use of Digital Tools:

  • To develop ICT as a cross-curricular tool for learning and progression.
  • To promote learning through the development of thinking skills.
  • To enable children to understand and appreciate their place in the modern world

Based on the Rosenshine Principles by providing instructional support; teaching new material in manageable amounts; good use of modelling; helping pupils when they have made errors and providing for sufficient practice and review we ensure that the children at our school efficiently acquire, rehearse, and connect background knowledge.

Special Educational Needs Disability (SEND) / Pupil Premium / Higher Attainers

All children will have Quality First Teaching. Any children with identified SEND or in receipt of pupil premium funding may have work additional to and different from their peers in order to access the curriculum dependent upon their needs. As well as this, our school offers an aspirational and varied curriculum, providing children with a range of opportunities in order for them to reach their full potential and consistently achieve highly from their starting points.

Implementation

Coverage of the curriculum is mapped out across the school for all year groups.  Expectations of teaching and learning of Computing in the National Curriculum (2013) are split into three strands (Computer Science, Safe and Responsible Use of Technology and Use of Digital Tools). It is therefore important that children recognise the difference between what makes each one relevant to their future, as well as their everyday lives. High quality teaching of Computing, from Nursery through to Year 6, utilises a combination of practical lessons and theory lessons designed to promote discussion and nurture understanding.

Our curriculum aims to inspire pupils’ curiosity about computing and the digital world and want to find out more. To ensure high standards of teaching and learning in computing, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school. Computing is a foundation subject in the National Curriculum and at Blackfell implementation of the computing curriculum is in line with 2014 Primary National Curriculum requirements for KS1 and KS2 and the Foundation Stage Curriculum in England. This provides a broad framework and outlines the knowledge and skills taught in each key stage. Computing teaching at our school will deliver the requirements of the National Curriculum through units of work taken and are adapted from the Purple Mash scheme. Teachers plan using our “Blackfell Computing Scheme of Work” which highlights the knowledge, skills and vocabulary for each year group, and is progressive from year to year.

Our Blackfell Computing Long Term Overview is broken down into three strands ensuring each unit is covered at least once in all year groups:

1) Computer Science: using computational thinking to solve problems and make things for a purpose.  It generally, but not always, involves writing programs.

2) Using of digital tools to solve problems and create useful, meaningful outcomes.

3) Safe and responsible use of technology including online safety, clear links to PHSE units should be made within the curriculum but also taught within computing sessions

Our Computing Progression Model is supplemented by the Purple Mash scheme whereby units are incorporated into teaching from Reception to Year 6, ensuring consistency, support for teaching and progression throughout the school.

Computing units are broken down into hourly, weekly lessons, usually with two units taught per half-term. Repetition of a unit does not mean pupils are repeating an activity, it simply means pupils are building on established skills whilst also embedding previous concepts. Units are practical and engaging and allow computing lessons to be hands on. Units cover a broad range of computing components such as: Online Safety, Coding, Use of Microsoft Office programmes, Spreadsheets, Network and 3D pictures.

When teaching computing teachers should also consider the children’s interests to ensure their learning is engaging, broad and balanced. Teachers should ensure that ICT and computing capability is also achieved through core and foundation subjects and where appropriate and necessary ICT and computing should be incorporated into work for other subjects using our wide range of interactive ICT resources. Through our Purple Mash subscription our teachers can deliver thematic, cross curricular lessons that also follow children’s interests and provide flexibility. Purple Mash has an online portal of age appropriate software, games and activities as well as topic materials and materials to support children’s learning in other subject areas for all key stages. Through pupils computing lessons they will also use the Purple Mash software to ‘make music’ using the 2Sequence program, design and make using the 2Animate software and make links with maths through spreadsheets using 2Calculate.

Computing teaching at Blackfell is practical and engaging and a variety of teaching approaches and activities are provided based on teacher judgement and pupil ability. Computing assessment is based on teacher’s assessment of children and incorporates “Locked in Learning” and end of unit quizzes. During lessons, Braindrops are used for children to demonstrate what they have learnt during a lesson. Teachers will also ensure 2 Flash Back Grids are completed within each unit to ensure the retention of learning. At the end of each year, a judgement is made as to whether children had met the expected standard within Computing. This information is then passed on to the next class teacher as a record of the child’s progress throughout the year.

We have a wide range of resources to support our computing teaching including but not limited to, iPads, laptops/Chromebooks, desktop computers, bee-bots, webcams and cameras. Pupils may use desktops, laptops or iPads independently, in pairs, alongside a TA or in a group with the teacher. Teachers and pupils are also aware of the importance of health and safety and pupils are always supervised when using technology and accessing the internet.

Pupils at Blackfell Primary School are fully encouraged to engage with ICT and technology outside of school. Each teacher and pupil at Blackfell have their own unique Purple Mash login and password which can be accessed within school and home. Computing work can be stored and saved using pupil log in details and homework or ‘2do’s’ can also be set for pupils to access and complete tasks at home that link with their current class learning. Pupils also have login details for the network whilst in school so they are able to save documents to the school server also. In addition, pupils all have secure login details to Microsoft Teams where they are able to access their own account linked to class Teams pages, homework and remote learning can be accessed through this portal. Parents/carers at Blackfell are also encouraged to support the implementation of ICT and computing where possible by encouraging use of ICT and computing skills at home during homework/remote learnings tasks and support pupils beyond the classroom.  

At Blackfell Primary School we provide a variety of opportunities for computing learning inside and outside the classroom. Computing and safeguarding go hand in hand and at Blackfell we provide a huge focus on internet safety inside and outside of the classroom. Additional to all pupils studying two online safety units (Purple Mash, CEOP and Google Internet Legends) through their computing lessons, every year we also take part in National Internet Safety Day in February. The Computing leader alongside class teachers will plan additional internet safety lessons and activities to take part in following a specific yearly theme. Internet Safety assemblies are also held as well as visits from the local police.

Finally, at Blackfell we actively encourage parent partnership within the computing curriculum and outside of school. Parents are made aware of e-safety issues through the school website, links via our Jotter app, letters and information newsletters.

Impact

Our Computing Curriculum is high quality, well thought out and is planned to demonstrate progression and build on and embed current skills. We focus on progression of knowledge and skills in the different computational components and alike other subject’s discreet vocabulary progression also form part of the units of work which can be found on our “Blackfell Scheme of Work” documents. If children are completing lessons independently within the units of the curriculum, they are deemed to be making good or better progress.

We measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:

  • Pupil discussions and interviewing the pupils about their learning (pupil voice).
  • Moderation staff meetings with opportunities for dialogue between teachers.
  • Photo evidence and images of the pupils practical learning.
  • Evidence of outcomes (computing book, work saved on pupil accounts)
  • A reflection on standards achieved against the planned outcomes.
  • Learning walks and reflective staff feedback (teacher voice).
  • Teachers annual report of pupil’s assessment.

 

Miss. J. Dodds

September 2021