ICT & Computer Science
“To prepare humanity for the next 100 years, we need more of our children to learn computer programming skills, regardless of their future profession. Along with reading and writing, the ability to program is going to define what an educated person is.”
Salman Khan – Founder, Khan Academy
Key Stage 3
As a department we want our students to be creators, not consumers of technology. KS3 students receive one lesson of Computer Science per week and are taught in mixed ability groups. The curriculum has a strong Computer Science focus with an in depth programming project built into each year. We have also kept the valuable and creative elements of ICT, such as spreadsheet modeling, database design and digital graphics creation.
In Year 7 we explore the role of hardware, software and networks topologies, followed by an introduction to the principles of computational thinking which prepares students for the creation of interactive games.
In year 8 we look at how text, images and sound are converted into binary so they can be processed by a computer, develop skills in database design and computer modeling, create digital graphics and finally design, develop and test APPs for the Android platform.
In Year 9 there is a focus on understanding Internet Protocols and effective search techniques, coding HTML & CSS to create web pages. The fundamentals of programming are introduced, followed by the development of Python based interactive stories.
Running alongside our curriculum we develop our pupils digital literacy through a series of project based homeworks which address the ever changing and challenging issues of online safety.
Key Stage 4
We offer two pathways at KS4 which cater for the different needs of our pupils.
GCSE Computer Science
Part for the new 1-9 GCSE specifications, this course is relevant to the modern, changing world of computing, the new GCSE in Computer Science is designed to boost computing skills essential for 21st century. Students are given an in depth understanding of the fundamental principles of Computer Science, computational thinking and programming. The course will be a solid foundation for students looking to be apart of the ever changing world of computing.
This course is for those interested in the use of digital technology in the creative sector, Creative iMedia is an engaging and inspiring qualification which provides students with an opportunity to develop individual projects on Comic strips, character design, digital animation, web page creation and more. Students are equipped with a wide range of transferable skills, such as research, planning, and reviewing and the hands-on approach has strong relevance to the way young people use the technology required in creative media.
Students who take Study+ as an KS4 option, now have the chance to gain the ECDL (Europe Computer Driving License) certification. This qualification, offers students recognition of their literacy in computer skills and is designed for entry computer users and will get them to a high computer literacy standard. For those who complete the level two standard profile, they will receive a qualification worth the equivalent of a GCSE A*-C.
Code Club is open to all Key Stage 3 students and runs on Thursday lunchtimes. It has had an enthusiastic uptake and more than 40 hours of code were written in the first three months. The aim is to introduce programming concepts in a fun and auto-didactic way, which is proving very popular with our young computer scientists.
Mr M Holmes
Lead practitioner in ICT & Computer Science