Computing (formerly known as ICT) has become part of the way we all work and entertain ourselves. Almost everything we do at school now involves the use of Computing and therefore, through teaching Computing we aim to equip children to participate in a world of rapidly-changing technology. We enable them to find, explore, analyse, exchange and present information. We also help them to develop the necessary skills for using information in a discriminating and effective way. This is a major part of enabling our pupils to be confident, creative and independent learners.
As of September 2013, we are advised that we must return to the earlier name of 'Computing' for this subject. The objectives of teaching Computing is to enable children:
- to develop Computing capability in finding, selecting and using information;
- to use Computing for effective and appropriate communication;
- to monitor and control events, both real and imaginary;
- to apply their Computing skills and knowledge to their learning in other areas;
- to explore their attitudes towards Computing and its value to them and society in general.
An objective of teaching Computing is to equip children with the technological skill to become independent learners, the teaching style that we adopt is as active and practical as possible. While at times we do give children direct instruction on how to use hardware or software, the main emphasis of our teaching in Computing is for individuals or groups of children to use computers to help them progress in whatever they need to study or find out. For example, they might use digital photos to track progress in DT or Spread sheets to collate data in a science experiment.
Moreover, the teaching of Computing contributes to teaching and learning in all curriculum areas. It also offers ways of impacting on learning which are not possible with conventional methods. Teachers use software to present information visually, dynamically and interactively, so that children understand concepts more quickly. For example, graphics work links in closely with work in art, and work using databases supports work in mathematics, while role-play simulations and the Internet prove very useful for research in humanities subjects.
We teach Computing in Reception classes as an integral part of the topic work covered during the year. As the reception class is part of the Foundation Stage of the National Curriculum, we relate the Computing aspects of the children's work to the objectives set out in the early learning work areas. The children have the opportunity to use the computers, a digital camera and a floor robot. During the year they gain confidence and start using the computer to find out information and to communicate in a variety of ways.