Intent

At Penwortham Priory Academy we believe that Computing and the use of ICT is central to the education of all pupils. We aim to give each pupil the opportunity to apply and develop their technological understanding and skills across a wide range of situations and tasks. Pupils are encouraged to develop a confident and safe approach to Computing and the use of ICT, with the understanding of the capabilities and flexibility of their resources. With the knowledge that Computing and ICT will undoubtedly continue to form a major part in their life at home, in further education and places of work, we ensure the Computing and ICT experiences and abilities that the pupils are equipped with at Priory, are effective and transferrable life skills.

The National Curriculum for Computing aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • Can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation
  • Can analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems
  • Can evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems
  • Are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology.

Through a high-quality computing education, we equip pupils to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world. Students build on prior learning from Key Stage 2 to broaden their understanding and application of the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work, and how to put this knowledge to use through programming.

They are challenged to learn through the use of ‘BIG Questions’ and are required to think hard in lessons using ‘higher order’ skills such as analysis and evaluation. The curriculum encourages them to develop their leadership and organisational skills in the practical tasks. Pupils are equipped to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of content and demonstrate their growing knowledge through their written and verbal communication.

Students are expected to show resilience through becoming increasingly competent in being digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.

Knowledge underpins our curriculum therefore pupils are given an overview of their learning journey at the start of their unit of work so that they know what they’ll be learning, the skills they’ll develop, why they need to know this and how they’ll learn it; this helps them develop their schemata and helps them understand how this subject links to others.

The curriculum is sequenced to build on existing knowledge and incrementally develop new knowledge. Our aim is to make Computing an engaging and challenging learning experience.

We recognise that all classes have pupils with widely differing ICT abilities. This is especially true when some pupils have access to ICT equipment at home, while others do not. We provide suitable learning opportunities for all pupils by matching the challenge of the task to the ability and experience of the pupil. Pupils understand the sequence and what they’re required to learn as a result of using personal learning checklists. Spaced retrieval, low stakes testing, and repeated practice are used to ensure that concepts are understood and knowledge remembered. 

We place emphasis on the acquisition of tier 2 and tier 3 vocabulary, modelling and explaining this in our teaching and facilitating exposure to it using ‘real-life’ reading texts, journals, websites and relevant articles to keep up to date with the technological changes that go on in the world.

In addition to the diverse and rich opportunities offered through the teaching, we value opportunities to take pupils out on trips and visits and also enhance the curriculum by inviting relevant specialists in.

 

Implementation

  • To ensure that we make Computing an engaging and challenging learning experience.
  • Keep up to date with the technological changes that go on in the world.
  • Our topic led curriculum allows pupils to engage with the National Curriculum objectives in a range of ways using a variety of tools including desktop computers.
  • We recognise that all classes have pupils with widely differing ICT abilities. This is especially true when some pupils have access to ICT equipment at home, while others do not. We provide suitable learning opportunities for all pupils by matching the challenge of the task to the ability and experience of the pupil. We achieve this in a variety of ways, by:
    • Setting common tasks which are open-ended and can have a variety of responses.
    • Setting tasks of increasing difficulty (not all pupils complete all tasks).
    • Grouping pupils by ability in the room and setting different tasks to each ability group.
    • Providing resources of different complexity depending on the ability of the pupil.
  • It is important to give pupils the opportunity to use a variety of hardware and programmes/apps.
  • Clear overview of curriculum within each key stage and each year, showing the sequence of learning. 

Please also refer to the documents below.

ICT & Computing Curriculum

Attainment and Progress (national tests and assessments)


2023 GCSE ICT & Computing Outcomes

Subject

9 - 7 %

9 - 5 %

9 - 4 %

Computer Science

13.8

31 55.2

2023 BTEC ICT & Computing Outcomes

Subject

D* - D%

D* - M%

D* - P%

ICT iMedia  

15

35

75

 

Extra Curricular Clubs

Computing Club every Monday lunchtime

  • Students practice their programming skills using software such as Scratch (making their own games), Python, BBC Micro:bit. 
  • Make animations
  • Photo Editing and Image editing using Pixlr (online software)
  • Creating Websites and Movie Editing - Using Powerpoint and other software
  • Using products such as Sphero, Make Block robots
  • 3d Printing using TinkerCad and OnShape

ICT open access every day – break/lunchtimes


House Competitions

  • Computing Christmas Codebreaking Competition
  • Computing Design an App Competition


Trips and visits

Careers opportunities in ICT & Computer Science

Beyond the expertise found in the classroom, pupils have the opportunity to:

  • Attend Computing Club where a diverse range of STEM activities and events are celebrated.
  • Take part in the STEM careers fair annually held in school
  • Attend trips and visits and experience the technology whilst there.
  • Pupils are exposed to language and practices of the ICT & Tech industry in class
  • BAME Computer Scientists are highlighted and celebrated via displays in the ICT Department & posters around the school.
  • Pupils research careers as part of HW tasks in Yr 8 and 9 and also in National careers Week.

 

Year Group

Activity

Outcome

Years 7 - 11

Computing Career focused starters

To highlight possible career opportunities that are available in Computing/ICT.

Year 8

CyberFirst Girl’s coding competition

To focus on STEM opportunities for girls including GCHQ.

Programme of opportunities to help young people explore their passion for tech by introducing them to the world of cyber security.

Years 9 - 11

Alan Turing Cryptography Competition – University of Manchester

To focus on STEM opportunities and careers in Computer Science / Maths

All

Computing career focused lesson

Talk from former pupil working as a lecturer at UCLAN

To highlight possible career opportunities that are available in Computing/ICT.

Year 10 & 11

UCLAN cyber security event

To gain hands-on experience in the role of an ethical hacker, a chief security officer, and a mobile phone investigator and experience what Cyber Security involves.

All

A homework in National Careers Week linked: Pupils will create a presentation in creative format of their choice, on a career linked to our field.

Pupils have the opportunity do investigate a career in depth, looking at; Entry details, salary, job description, career prospects, skills required.

All

A lesson in National Careers Week focusing on careers in our field.

Pupils are aware of what careers are available in our field and pathways to get there. The classroom display is highlighted as a continual reference point.

Pupils are reminded of our Careers Advisor

Pupils are reminded to store information in their Personal Development File.

All

Pupils directed to apprenticeship information on our careers board, during National Apprenticeship Week.

Pupils are aware of the types of apprenticeships are available in our field and pathways to get there. The classroom display is highlighted as a continual reference point.

Pupils are reminded of our Careers Advisor

Pupils are reminded to store information in their Personal Development File.

Years 9 - 11

College and University shows promoted.

Pupils will be aware of shows which may inspire them to enroll on courses in our field at college or university.

Year 8

3D Printing Workshop

Pupils are invited to take part in a 3D printing workshop held by CREATE education on an annual basis.

Pupils are introduced to industry standard 3D design software (Onshape) as well as TinkerCAD)

Pupils are also taught how to slice their 3D designs using Ultimaker Cura

All Years

3D Printer

3D Scanner

Mayku Formbox

Pupils are able to use industry standard hardware in Computing Club on a week basis.

This hardware is provided to the school to through BAE Systems to develop pupils skills

Cultural Capital Opportunities In Computing

  • Digital skills and ‘Netiquettes’. How to compose emails formally/informally in a professional manner.
  • Delivering a presentation to peers.
  • Creating websites with visually impaired/disabled people in mind.
  • Being able to carry out advanced searches on the internet.
  • Considering our digital footprint and the future implications of this.
  • Reading newspaper articles on the advancements of computing.
  • Cybersecurity and guarding oneself against social engineering techniques - Understanding the use of cookies by companies/organisations to carry out ‘surveillance’ on us.
  • Opportunity for Y8/KS4 pupils to meet a visiting Computing professional – 3D printing
  • Wider reading/understanding on how computers/technology has changed the way the police do their job and that this will continue to evolve.

Related News

12 June 2024
Image of Year 8 pupils discover careers of the future with 3D printing workshop

Year 8 pupils discover careers of the future with 3D printing workshop

Year 8 pupils took part in an exciting 3D printing project last Thursday, funded by BAE Systems. 

30 January 2024
Image of Christmas code breaking competition results

Christmas code breaking competition results

The competition challenged pupils to figure out the Morse Code, test themselves with the Caesar and PigPen ciphers, and then create their own code breaker - and include the solution too!