Pupils will become confident and responsible digital citizens. They will develop computational thinking and key skills to promote resilience when creating digital content. Pupils will develop strategies to build healthy online relationships and engage positively with online technologies.
Children develop the early building blocks of coding, in the Early Years Foundation Stage, by exploring connections between inputs and outputs. For example, programmable robots, such as Beebots, are used to generate simple algorithms and programming language. As the children move to Key Stage 1, they begin to understand how these simple algorithms can be used to programme a computer model, e.g. iPad-based apps - Daisy the Dinosaur, Scratch Jnr. The explicit language of debugging is also introduced to pupils who then practise locating and identifying coding mistakes, through trial and error.
In Key Stage 2, this debugging process becomes more complex and pupils start to de-construct code that has already been written. For example, when using 2Code (Purple Mash), the children build algorithms, building on each step, before being presented with an erroneous example and are tasked with correcting the errors. Pupils make links to their previous experience of inputs/outputs, using products such as Lego WeDo to link the control of an external device to programmable computer software. Online coding platforms, such as Hour of Code, also provide opportunities to explore real-life examples of coding software that is used in online gaming. By the end of KS2, children consolidate their knowledge of programming to innovate and design their own code. For example, they join online Scratch communities and create studios which show-case their designing, writing and debugging of code. This is also linked to HTML coding, going behind websites and manipulating code, using tools such as Mozilla.
The creation of multimedia begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage, as children begin to explore different software features and how this changes the outcome. For example, the pupils use art-based software to experiment with colours, brush size and fonts. They also recognise the function of the ‘undo’ button and how work can be edited, changed and perfected. The pupils also use digital photos, as part of their learning and are supported by an adult to organise these sequentially, adding simple text or a digital signature. As the pupils move into Key Stage 1, they are introduced to early keyboard skills and start to develop fluency and confidence with typing. Pupils create more complex multimedia documents, independently, which combine images and text, using programmes such as Book Creator and Pic Collage. The children also make cross-curricular links with other subjects by using apps to support learning (e.g. Numbots, Accelerated Reader). Towards the end of Key Stage 1, pupils are introduced to Google Workspace, logging into cloud-based apps which allow them to start exploring more formal presentation software (e.g. Google Docs).
In Key Stage 2, pupils format documents with a growing awareness of audience. They work across a wider range of presentational software, e.g. Google slides/Powerpoint, Google Docs/Word, Google Sheets/Excel, making decisions about the most appropriate software/tool for the task, by the end of KS2. They collaborate on documents and make use of a combination of media to complete their task. For example, pupils use Google Forms to create surveys/quizzes then Google Slides to present their findings.
In Early Years Foundation Stage, teachers introduce the concept of internet search engines as a tool for inquiry. Children are encouraged to ask questions and explore the different types of results generated (web pages, images, videos). As they move into Key Stage 1, pupils increasingly use keywords, independently, to refine their searches, e.g. searching for appropriate images to add to a multimedia document.
In Key Stage 2, children develop a greater understanding of the World Wide Web and how this provides opportunities for communication and collaboration. They are introduced to email, as a means of sending and receiving messages and documents. They use individual logins to access Google Classroom to explore and respond to resources and tasks assigned by the teacher. As internet searchers, the children build on their knowledge of keyword searching to understand the role of web crawlers, how results are returned to them and the different ways these are ranked and organised. By the end of Key Stage 2, children have become more discerning searchers, drawing on their understanding of what constitutes reliable information and how to fact-check information before sharing it with others, making links with Online Safety and PSHE. The children have a clear understanding of the concept of a computer network and its key components (switch, router, server etc…); the journey of data from its source to its destination and the difference between the internet and the World Wide Web.
Throughout the teaching of online safety, children are encouraged to make strong links with the PSHE curriculum, particularly Protective Behaviours. In Early Years Foundation Stage, this forms the key basis of online safety discussions, where children use emojees and representations of feelings to discuss their online experiences. This creates an early awareness of Digital Citizenship: how their actions may affect others and who the children should approach for advice and support. As they move into Key Stage 1, the children develop an awareness of what constitutes personal information and who this should be shared with. They develop strategies for keeping their personal information safe and secure and the concept of digital ‘ownership’.
In Key Stage 2, children start to explore the potential dangers and pitfalls associated with an online presence. They consider where their personal information may end up and how to use privacy settings to control their online visibility. Recognising and responding to online bullying is a key part of the online safety curriculum and children are made aware of different actions they can take to report harmful content/experiences and to get advice (e.g. Childline, CEOP button). They consider how a negative online presence could affect an individual’s ‘online reputation’ and how an ‘online identity’ may be different to real life. Copyright and data ownership is introduced to pupils when they are searching for and sharing digital content. By the end of Key Stage 2, fair use and creative commons licensing are understood by pupils and applied when searching for and distributing digital content. They take ownership of their personal ‘data’ and can make use of settings and reporting features on apps and websites, to ensure it is used appropriately and safely.