Computing at North Wootton Academy
In line with the 2014 National Curriculum for Computing, our aim is to provide a high-quality computing education which equips children to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world through digital means. We recognise that our pupils' lives, both socially and vocationally, will increasingly take place within a digital medium and therefore, this subject is seen as vital in developing a broad range of skills that will enable not only digital competence but also ensure an understanding of how to be a responsible online citizen; our curriculum therefore places equal emphasis on teaching ‘Online Safety’ in line with the expectations of Keeping Children Safe in Education 2019 and will be reviewed this year in light of Teaching Online Safety in School 2019.
Computing is taught within weekly lessons as we believe regular practice is key to developing digital literacy.
In the lower school this is mainly through the class teacher whilst in the upper school, one teacher within each phase is a specialist to deliver the content to multiple classes; this ensures that the level of knowledge, confidence and competence of the teaching can be maximised, something that is very important in a subject in which the pupils can uniquely be the most knowledgeable in the room.
Currently, teachers use the ‘Switched On: Computing’ scheme, published by Rising Stars, to inform the planning of their computing lessons, although this will be reviewed in 2019-20. Whilst the school also uses ‘Online Safety’ by Rising Stars; one unit from each scheme of work is completed half termly.
The school has a computing suite and children also have access to ipads, ensuring that children can use computers for a range of purposes and that it is used across the wider curriculum, as well as in discrete computing lessons.
Within the upper school, all pupils have a school email and online One drive and this is used to enable collaborative work throughout the school week including home learning. As all the school systems, including these accounts, are monitored through Netsweeper, this provides an excellent training ground in which to practise their ‘etiquette.’
Wherever possible, pupil’s work is stored within an e-portfolio which will stay with the child as they progress through the school.
Their digital literacy is demonstrated through their competence in completing each unit of work. The children will document their work throughout their learning and then summative assessment will be used to record attainment using the mark book.
Online safety is assessed through formative assessment and an annual pupil voice and e-safety tests, which the children complete when receiving own accounts.
Our computing curriculum also ensures that children become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.