Miss S Thompson
Through our computing curriculum, we aim to give every child the skills that will enable them to utilise and embrace new technology in a safe and socially responsible way. At St. Mary’s, we deliver a high-quality computing curriculum, engaging lessons and opportunities. We aim for our children to become autonomous, digitally literate and competent end-users of technology. We use computing to support and enhance learning across the curriculum and through computer science we aim to develop children’s creativity, resilience and critical thinking. We want our children to develop their understanding of themselves as individuals within their community and recognise themselves as members of a globally connected society where they are responsible digital citizens.
We utilise social media with our website and twitter pages, where we are able to celebrate children’s successes and keep our school community involved and informed about school life. In doing this, we demonstrate how social media should be used positively. Keeping safe online is at the forefront of our curriculum and promoted each week in the school newsletter.
At St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, we follow a broad and balanced computing curriculum that builds on previous learning and provides both support and challenge for learners. This scheme of learning follows the National Curriculum targets to make sure that children progress and are in line with the accessibility we have in school so that we can meet the needs of all of our pupils. At St. Mary’s, children use desktop computers, iPads or work unplugged, to look at the three key areas of the computing curriculum: information technology, digital literacy and computer science.
Digital Literacy and Online Safety
Children are taught to develop ICT skills that can be thoughtfully applied in a range of different situations, giving children increased independence in the choices they make over which technology to use to help them reach an intended outcome. As they progress through KS1 and KS2, children become increasingly confident in the application of their digital skills, by becoming efficient and effective communicators, collaborators and analysts, showing imagination and creativity in their use of ICT in different aspects of their learning and life beyond school.
Online safety is another fundamental part of Computing. We teach children the benefits, but also safety issues, relating to the use of the Internet on a regular basis. We also have separate Online Safety sessions which take place at the beginning of every new unit of Computing as well as extra as part of our RSE Curriculum.
Progressively from KS1, children are taught how different systems, that handle electronically retrievable information, ‘think’ and how they can program these systems to reach a desired goal. Teaching computational thinking has many advantages for children, not only in the ICT world, but also in everyday life because it helps children to recognise that some tasks, which may seem very difficult at first, are very manageable when broken down into smaller steps. Children have the opportunity to gain experience using different hardware: Bee-Bots, Micro-bits, iPads, data loggers, keyboard and mouse.
All pupils engage in a bi-weekly, discrete Computing lesson where they familiarise themselves with a variety of systems and their components that handle electronically retrievable information. In addition, they gain experience in using different software: word processing, emails, spreadsheets, the use of databases, coding programs, graphics programs and a range of other software and applications. The children are given the opportunity to explore how technology is used beyond school and are able to apply their computing knowledge to real life situations.