Computing at Alston
The teachers at Alston understand the immense value technology plays in supporting the Computing and whole school curriculum, day-to-day life of our school and also the increasing role it plays in our pupils’ lives as they grow older. We believe that technology can provide: enhanced collaborative learning opportunities; better engagement of pupils; easier access to rich content; support conceptual understanding of new concepts and can support the needs of all our pupils.
We provide staff with training and resources to carry out effective teaching of Computing; monitor this through assessments, moderation of evidence files and support where identified or requested, liaising with the strategic manager and drop-in lesson observations.
Our aim is for all our pupils to develop their computational thinking skills and creativity. At the core of the Computing curriculum lies computer science. Our children are able to build on their knowledge using information technology skills and by becoming computer literate. The use of Purple Mash across the school underpins the curriculum needs for all of these areas. Additionally, it enables us to forge cross-curricular links via the Cornerstones Curriculum.
Computing at Alston is taught in a number of ways.
In the Early Years the approach is through cross-curricular learning with an emphasis on hands on experiences and is assessed through the Understanding the World, Early Learning Goal. Teaching is through context-based and role play experiences using many resources such as I-Pads and programmable toys.
From Year One upwards, we use Purple Mash as a cohesive scheme of work addressing the statutory aspects of the National Curriculum. As a school, we believe in delivering fun and engaging lessons which help to raise standards and allow all pupils to achieve to their full potential. By Year Six, our pupils are given more freedom to use other Computing tools such as working with ‘green screen’ technology and coding using ‘Scratch’.
Whilst our discrete Computing lessons use Purple Mash as a foundation for teaching, we also enjoy the flexibility of using Computing to enhance our Cornerstones lessons and further engage the pupils in leading their own learning. They are able to use technology imaginatively and creatively whilst also becoming efficient learners and critical thinkers. Cross-curricular teaching helps enthuse and equip children with the capability to use technology throughout their lives. We believe that this transference of skills can aid in teaching pupils the strategies and knowledge necessary to enable them to reap the benefits of the online world, whilst being able to minimise risk to themselves or others.
All Computing lessons begin with the children acknowledging the on-line safety rules which are adhered to across the school community.
Key Stage 1
Key Stage 2
Progress is measured through regular teacher assessments. These take place at the end of each unit of work taught and data is subsequently analysed. Evidence folders are kept to provide hard-copy samples of pupil’s work in each class and work done through Purple Mash is saved electronically in the children’s personal document folders.