At West Moors Middle School, we believe that Computing is an essential part of the curriculum; a subject that is not only taught as a stand alone subject but is also woven into every other area of teaching and learning. In Computing, we intend to create enthusiastic and resilient digital citizens who are able to use technology in and out of the classroom effectively and safely. Through the study of Computing, our students will acquire a wide range of fundamental skills, knowledge and understanding that will equip them for the rest of their life. The programme of Computing at West Moors Middle follows the National Curriculum and our aim is for all children to develop a secure understanding of a wide range of transferable skills. This will enable them to make connections in and out of their Computing lessons.
Across both Key Stages, children have the opportunity to use a wide range of hardware and software that will allow them to code virtual and physical systems, solve problems, understand computer networks, use the internet efficiently and effectively, use technology safely and responsibly and produce work in a range of mediums such as video and photo. New learning is modelled by the teacher, retrieval is assessed at the start of every lesson and children have the opportunity to demonstrate their learning in context.
These elements are encompassed:
- To acknowledge the skills necessary for ICT capability.
- To use ICT tools and information sources to find, analyse, process and present information.
- To model and sequence events
- To use information sources and ICT tools to solve problems.
- To use ICT to support learning in a variety of contexts.
- To understand the implications of ICT for working life and society.
- To be aware of E Safety.
How Parents Can Help
The best way to support your child with any aspect of computing is to enjoy using technology with them and model the safe and responsible use of it. Here are five ideas:
1. Become the student
Let them show you how to use their favourite app or do something that they have learned in school.
2. Help them use technology to support their homework
If they have to practise a maths skill, help them create a how-to video demonstrating the skill. Why not create a short film based on a story they have written? Or perhaps an animation? Find some YouTube videos or play games together that support what they’re learning about in school.
3. Research with them
Research a topic they are learning about or are interested in with them. Decide together how reliable you think each website is — does the information on it appear anywhere else? Who created the website? Discuss the rankings — why does the search engine rank some at the top and some further down?
4. Communicate with family
Keep in touch with family members by composing emails together or using services like Skype to make video calls. Discuss how useful these tools can be when used responsibly.
5. Chat regularly
Ask children how they have been using technology this week, what their favourite app is etc. Make sure they feel they can come to you, should an issue arise for them.
West Moors has excellent facilities including two ICT suites each with 32 networked PCs, two pod areas containing 6 networked PCs for targeted and small group working and a dedicated SEN suite of 5 PCs. We are currently using Windows 7 and Microsoft Office Suite 2010.