Below you’ll find answer to questions that we are asked the most about the Mr Andrews Online Creative Computing Curriculum.
Do all of the core projects for the Key Stages cover all the relevant aspects of the computing curriculum?
Yes, all aspects of the computing curriculum are covered. These include Digital Literacy (DL), Computer Science (CS) and Information Technology (IT)
- [All pupils] can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation. (CS)
- [All pupils] can analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems. (CS)
- [All pupils] can evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems. (IT)
- [All pupils] are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology. (DL)
Computing in the curriculum: A guide for primary teachers
What's the purpose of the cross curricular projects?
The additional projects are opportunities to enrich other areas of the curriculum with the creative use of technology. They are designed not only to support the effective use of technology across the curriculum but also to raise the standards of learning across the curriculum.
The programme of study is a minimum entitlement – there’s nothing that imposes any limits on what schools, teachers or pupils can cover in computing.
How long does a project last?
Each project lasts a minimum of 6 lessons. However, as the projects move through the Key Stages, especially in Upper Key Stage 2, the project will require more time to complete. This is because they incorporate cross curricular links and provide the pupils with opportunities for greater depth in developing computing skills as well as skills in other subjects. Projects such as It’s My Business cover a breath of subjects (including literacy, maths, computing and business and enterprise) and cover a wide range of skills (21st Century Learning: Creativity, Collaborative Learning, Critical Thinking, Communication). You can read about these skills and why they are important in this blog post: Creative use of technology and why it matters in schools
How do the projects ensure progression?
By completing the projects in each year group (1 – 6) you covering progression in each of the elements of Computer Science, Digital Literacy and Information Technology. The skills progression grids clearly show what the children have learnt, what they are learning and what they will be learning in the future.
‘Your school has a statutory duty to offer a broad and balanced curriculum that prepares pupils to ‘use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world’. Therefore, as your school develops its scheme of work for computing, it would be unwise to ignore any of these *aspects, or to give too much emphasis to one to the detriment of the others.’
That said, you have the freedom to decide how much time you spend on any aspect of the programme of study, and there’s no implication that the number of bullet points or words should be proportional to the time spent on any aspect, as long as pupils have been taught all the content by the end of the key stage.”
Do you include assessment opportunities within the projects?
Yes, it is recommend assessment should be carried out at the end of the projects. The assessment statements are available in the Guide section of the Teachers’ Area. Each of the projects have a breakdown of the computing skills coverage (Information Technology, Digital Literacy and Computing Science) and includes skills coverage in other subjects covered by the projects.
The evidence to support this judgement can be assembled over the course of the key stage and need not be an onerous burden: as a child demonstrates their mastery of part of the curriculum the statement could be ‘ticked off’, with evidence of this achievement forming part of the child’s computing portfolio or blog. It’s likely that many pupils will assemble a lot of evidence for some statements and less for others, but some evidence of mastering each element should suffice to demonstrate meeting the expectations of the attainment targets.’
Computing in the national curriculum – A guide for primary teachers
What devices do we need to run these projects?
The projects can be accessed on desktops, laptops, Chromebooks, iPads and Android devices.
The projects have been designed to run on *iOS devices (iPads 2 and above), iPad Minis, iPad Airs and iPad Pros). However, the projects can be adapted to be used with Android devices. Samsung and Acer tablets operating with 1.3GHz quad-core processors and above are recommended. The minimum version of the operating system we recommend is 4.0.1
Budget Android tablets are not recommended as functionality, sound and image quality can be of a poor standard. These might include the Hudl or the Lenovo tablets and other budget tablets.
Which apps do I need?
There are a core number of apps which are required for the projects. Many of the apps are free or are available online. Once you’ve joined Mr Andrews Online, in the Teachers’ Area, you’ll have access to App Guide, which includes a list of apps and online tools and a guide on how to use each app. It is recommended that your IT technician sets up your devices prior to starting the projects and that they are tested first.