At St William of York, we value the contribution that technology can make for the benefit of all pupils, staff, parents and governors. We strive to provide safe opportunities in all subjects to motivate and inspire pupils and raise standards across the curriculum. Everyone in our school community will become lifelong learners equipped to meet developing technology with confidence, enthusiasm and the skills that will prepare them for a future in an ever-changing, technological world.
Our Computing vision encompasses the following aims:
- To provide pupils with the computational skills necessary to become independent learners
- To promote safe and sensible use of technology through a dedicated online-safety curriculum (Digital Citizenship).
- To use new technologies to enable good quality teaching and learning to take place
- To ensure appropriate and equal access to technology for all children regardless of age, gender, ethnicity or ability
- To utilise the online collaborative platforms e.g. Google Suite in order to provide extended and personalised learning opportunities through the use of technology
- To commit to the Continuous Professional Development of Computing
- To ensure our pupils take advantage of the ever quickening pace of technological change
- To provide pupils with an understanding of the role technology plays in everyday life at present and its importance in the future
- To provide opportunities for blended learning where and when appropriate (i.e COVID lockdowns)
Pupils with special educational needs should be able to use the technology to encourage their independence and develop their interests and abilities. Pupils identified as having special educational needs (SEND) will have access to a laptop in class where appropriate. These children will also have access to a range of apps and/or programs to support their learning. All pupils are to have access to the use of technology regardless of gender, race, cultural background or any physical or sensory disability. Pupils with learning difficulties can be given greater access to the whole curriculum through the use of technology. The youngest pupils in the Nursery and Reception classes begin to use and learn about Computing as soon as it is practicable after entering school, so that they gain confidence in using computers as soon as possible.
Good practice in the use of technology in the curriculum In Computing lessons
Pupils are timetabled for one Computing lesson per week (except when in Year 3, where computing will be taught in a block of one week per half term), where they have access to an iPad. During the Computing sessions, teachers will cover the skills and experience required to develop Computing Capability through the school’s Scheme of Work (Knowsley CLC) with an additional emphasis on online-safety and Coding/Programming. On the whole, some additional teaching of the Computing PoS (Digital Literacy, Information Technology etc) is done through cross-curricular subject links. Teachers ensure the teaching of Computing is evident within all areas of the curriculum where appropriate, following a topic-based approach and creating cross-curricular links.
In learning and teaching across the curriculum
There are Interactive Whiteboards (IWBs) or Smart TVs in every classroom, used throughout the day for whole class teaching in all subjects. The IWB is connected to a main classroom computer/laptop or iPad which is on the school network with access to shared work areas. In addition to this children have access to a number of classroom wireless laptops, and whole school shared iPads for use in all curriculum areas and to support extended learning during break times. Staff and pupils regularly access links to online resources (through Google Classroom, for example). Teaching and support staff select programs and make use of resources for pupils to use from the school network, or online resources e.g from Mymaths etc. Classes maintain an electronic portfolio of good examples of their computing via apps such as Book Creator and in some cases, Seesaw. St William of York continues to use Knowsley CLC criteria as a form of assessing the use of technology and the Computing Curriculum within cross-curricular subject work.
Developing and monitoring the Computing curriculum
The Head teacher and Computing Subject Leader are responsible for ensuring there is a Computing policy and that it is implemented. The Computing Subject Leader is responsible for mapping the Knowsley CLC’s Scheme of Work and for liaising with other subject leaders to map the delivery of further technology use in learning and teaching across the curriculum. Members of the SLT will monitor learning and teaching in Computing as they do for literacy and maths. The Computing Subject Leader will also be involved in monitoring class teachers’ curriculum planning and teaching. The Computing Subject Leader will carry out an audit of staff skills annually and support and training will be provided where necessary. All staff will regularly update their displays and ensure that the use of technology is evident with classroom and curricular displays. For example, the use of QR codes on displays.
Formative assessment allows teachers and TAs to address any issues as and when they arise in learning. Using a Computing Pupil Portfolio of “I Can Statements” linked to the Knowsley CLC’s Scheme of Work, each learning point has been mapped to activities. The “I Can Statements” themselves have been designed from a ‘Using and Applying’ approach and the pupils will need to use what they have learnt in order to complete the tasks asked of them and will be given an opportunity to self-reflect on their work through plenaries. These “I Can Statements” give the children opportunities to develop a range of techniques within the ‘Computing Umbrella’, thus providing them with an excellent grounding to further progress the knowledge of technology in the wider world.
The children have access to a variety of resources online that enable them to continue their learning of Computing and technology at home e.g TT Rockstars. These websites/resources are displayed on class pages where appropriate. We have a School Twitter account, and class Twitter accounts.
Identifying Gifted pupils in Computing
All staff have high aspirations to challenge and motivate children of all abilities. In Computing, pupils who are identified as gifted are challenged within lessons in school, and are additionally offered challenges during lessons. There are sometimes opportunities for extra curricular computing clubs to help identify pupils who are gifted, the following markers have been adapted:
Gifted Markers to look for in Computing
- Finds and uses new technology (hardware/software) to further learning
- Uses own skills and knowledge to help support (and ‘teach’) peers
- Uses technology to help solve problems, and understands when it also creates problems
- Considers the limitations of technology, and looks for ways to overcome these limitations
- Considers the purpose to which information is processed and communicated, and how the characteristics of different kinds of information influence its use
- Uses technology innovatively to support learning in other subjects
- Understands the positive impact using technology has in supporting the learning of less able pupils
- Uses skills and knowledge of Computing to design, create and ‘debug’ programs when only given a specified outcome
- Consider some of the social, economic and ethical issues raised by the use of technology both in and out of school
In our Computing curriculum the children revisit each objective several times, via different themes helping to ensure the best results are achieved. St William of York encourages discussions between staff and pupils to help the children best understand their progress and their next steps. We also encourage pupils to document their own learning in pupil journals. These journals can also be used to showcase and celebrate computing work as well as providing evidence of the pupil’s knowledge and digital skills. We constantly monitor to ensure the children have learnt the things they have been taught and if they are struggling, we can introduce additional support the next time they encounter that objective.
We measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:
- Pupil discussions and interviewing the pupils about their learning (pupil voice).
- Pupil journals and assessment/feedback on content creation.
- Governor monitoring with our subject computing link governor.
- Moderation staff meetings with opportunities for dialogue between teachers.
- Photo evidence of the pupils' practical learning.
- Video analysis through recording of performance or practical learning in lessons.
- Pupil self reflection.
- A reflection on standards achieved against the planned outcomes (progression/what to observe in learning).
- Learning walks and reflective staff feedback (teacher voice).
- Dedicated Computing leader time.
- Formative and summative approaches.