Like many ICT teachers I am currently making preparations to become a ‘Computing Teacher’. With this comes the responsibility of planning a new Computing curriculum in Key Stage 3. I am very excited about making these changes and putting my Computing Degree into practice! Luckily I have been making some preparations for this already in my schemes of work in Scratch and Kodu, along with the basic introduction in PC Basics.
In my school we also have another change from September in that for the first time in a few years Year 7 will be having discreet
ICT Computing lessons. Up until now this has only been delivered in a cross-curricular fashion since the introduction of our transition school. I’m excited about being able to impact upon all three years of key stage 3 and get them programming from a younger age.
For now I am mostly going to focus on Years 7 and 8 so they will have started to embed those skills ready for when we fully change to Computing in 2014. I’m also hoping to incorporate an OpenBadge system for each topic too (there are some samples of my badge designs below).
So here is my big plan:
- Initial IT/Computing Assessment – This is a short couple of activities in order for us to gain a baseline idea of what the students are capable of and allocate rough levels, previously we carried this out at the start of year 8.
- Creating Games in Kodu – This will move from Year 9; I have generally found that younger students seem to pick up the skills in Kodu much quicker (and seem more interested) than the older ones.
- Digital Literacy – This will be a significantly condensed, adapted and re-branded version of my current Skill Building curriculum (currently reserved for low ability year 8 students)
- Ingenious Inventions – In this scheme of work students will design and create a virtual new invention that will model a physical system to solve a real-world problem. They will use Scratch 2.0 to create a simulation of the invention.
- PC Basics – This is currently taught at year 8 and designed to teach students the basics of computers and how they work.
- Python Magic – Following my completion of the Python course on Codecademy I’ve now compiled some resources to deliver this to Year 8. I can see why so many schools have decided to follow the Python-route, it is a simple language to get the hang of and enforces good programming practices.
- PC Basics Extended / Computing Theory (Have yet to think of a quirky name!) – This will cover the main theoretical aspects from the new Programme of Study.
The next four topics are already delivered in our Year 8 curriculum and will be kept as part of our curriculum offer. The first three listed should cover the sections on undertaking creative projects and creating and using digital information:
This year we have been piloting (loosely) some of the tasks from OCR’s Entry Level Computing course. This needs some tweaking but we shall probably run with it again next year.
I also devised some resources around using Kodu to explore and ‘colonise’ Mars. These cover some of the functional skills tasks so will probably introduce this from next year for all groups too.
I believe our year 9 students are dropping down to one lesson per week from September so between some of these newer resources and some of our old content there should be enough to cover most of the curriculum here. I will make some more changes when Computing is introduced formally in 2014.