Teaching Computing Skills at Wheatfields Infants and Nursery School
Learning how to use computers and other information technology is crucial to our children who are growing up in the 21st century. To support this learning, we have interactive whiteboards and visualisers in every classroom so that even from the youngest ages the children can see technology in action and begin their journey to being digitally literate, have a good understanding of what information Technology is and how it can be used, and how to keep themselves and information safe online .
A large proportion of computing in the early years is linked very closely to other subject areas, for example looking at and creating patterns or following instructions or a sequence of instructions. These are Computational Thinking skills that can and should be explored in an unplugged way (without the use of technology). Computational Thinking is all about problem solving, explaining what has happened, working out what is important, spotting similarities and differences and patterns, identifying and using instructions and noticing how these instructions are built up. The children in Reception and Nursery are encouraged to tinker with different forms of technology such as technological toys and iPads so that they can independently see the cause and effect they have on technology, and comment on what happens.
In Key Stage 1 we use the Teach Computing scheme of work created on behalf of the NCCE (National Centre for Computing Education) to plan the learning and skills progression for the children. This is spilt into 4 main areas of learning in each year group: Computing Systems and Networks, Creating Media, Data and Information, and Programming.
In order to successfully achieve the skills within these areas of learning, the children have access to iPads, laptops and other technology devices such as Beebots and data loggers with software appropriate to the children’s age and stage of development.
Safeguarding children online is vital in this digital age. The children are regularly taught and reminded about how they can keep themselves safe online and what to do if anything makes them worried or uncomfortable.