All pupils at The Downley School are immersed in a carefully crafted computing curriculum that is relevant to life in modern Britain and our global community.
Our Computing curriculum enables pupils to learn, grow and succeed together and is underpinned by our six values:
Create lively stimulating learning experiences where every pupil is encouraged to maximise children’s opportunities for intellectual and social development. We help children to develop their understanding of appropriate online behaviour, copyright issues, and to make healthy use of technology.
Computer programming is an area of learning that can be frustrating and require determination to succeed. A small change in computer code can stop a program working and identifying the problem is a specialist skill. Children are given help and encouragement to find these problems and learn from their mistakes.
Children work in a variety of ways; in pairs, in groups or as a whole class. It is common for some children to have Computing skills from outside the classroom and children are encouraged to assist each other when they can.
Our scheme uses interesting and varied resources to motivate and inspire children of all abilities. Group projects enable children to work and succeed together. Our scheme aims to instil a sense of enjoyment around using technology and to develop pupil’s appreciation of its capabilities and the opportunities technology offers to create, manage, organise, and collaborate.
Children will develop the ability to contribute to an increasingly online world, using email, websites and, eventually, social media to develop their sense of membership in their local community and beyond. Through our curriculum, we intend for pupils not only to be digitally competent and have a range of transferable skills at a suitable level for the future workplace, but also to be responsible online citizens.
Our curriculum helps pupils to develop lively, enquiring minds with the ability to question and reason rationally. It increases their ability to apply themselves successfully to problem-solving activities and other tasks.
We use the Kapow computing curriculum which is split into five areas:
Computer systems and networks
Identifying hardware and using software, while exploring how computers communicate and connect to one another.
Understanding that a computer operates on algorithms, and learning how to write, adapt and debug code to instruct a computer to perform set tasks.
Learning how to use various devices — record, capture and edit content such as videos, music, pictures and photographs.
Ensuring that information is collected, recorded, stored, presented and analysed in a manner that is useful and can help to solve problems.
Understanding the benefits and risks of being online — how to remain safe, keep personal information secure and recognising when to seek help in difficult situations.
Children are also encouraged to have a positive attitude when engaging with technology and its associated resources, a good knowledge of how technology and computational thinking can be used to solve problems outside of computing lessons.
We follow the Kapow Computing scheme, which covers the National Curriculum for the whole school. The scheme of work is designed with three strands which run throughout:
• Computer science
• Information technology
• Digital literacy
Lessons incorporate a range of teaching strategies from independent tasks, paired and group work, as well as unplugged and digital activities. This variety means that lessons are engaging and appeal to those with a variety of learning styles.
Differentiated guidance is available for every lesson to ensure that lessons can be accessed by all pupils and opportunities to stretch pupils’ learning are available when required. Knowledge organisers for each unit support pupils in building a foundation of factual knowledge by encouraging recall of key facts and vocabulary.
Computing is timetabled at different times for each class, ensuring that sufficient devices are available when required.
Topics for each of the subject areas (Computer systems and networks, Programming, Creating media, Data handling, Online safety) are developed from EYFS through to Year 6. Each year also includes a ‘showcase project’. These units give children the chance to combine and apply skills and knowledge gained from a range of the five key areas above, to produce a specific outcome.
The expected impact of following the Kapow Primary Computing scheme is that children will:
- Be critical thinkers and able to understand how to make informed and appropriate digital choices in the future.
- Understand the importance that computing will have going forward in both their educational and working life and in their social and personal futures.
- Understand how to balance time spent on technology and time spent away from it in a healthy and appropriate manner.
- Understand that technology helps to showcase their ideas and creativity. They will know that different types of software and hardware can help them achieve a broad variety of artistic and practical aims.
- Show a clear progression of technical skills across all areas of the National curriculum - computer science, information technology and digital literacy.
- Be able to use technology both individually and as part of a collaborative team.
- Be aware of online safety issues and protocols and be able to deal with any problems in a responsible and appropriate manner.
- Have an awareness of developments in technology and have an idea of how current technologies work and relate to one another.
- Meet the end of key stage expectations outlined in the National curriculum for Computing
Pupils leave The Downley School equipped with a range of skills to enable them to succeed in their secondary education and be active participants in an increasingly digital world. They are prepared for their future aspirations in any career that they choose to follow.
They understand that when we learn together, we grow together and succeed together.