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Diary of a Lead Teacher: Cross-Curricular Computing

Author: ejwebster

Computing week is fast approaching at Prendergast Primary School and this month we have been working hard to plan how to engage parents, teachers and children in all things computing.

We have a strong emphasis on cross-curricular learning here and even in these early planning stages, it is clear that the upcoming computing week will provide a wealth of opportunities to show children how computing skills can be developed and applied in so many subjects. In preparation, we have looked through the Curriculum and pulled out the skills and knowledge that are most appropriate to computational thinking. In Maths, children will be working on directional and positional language, angles, turns/rotations as well as statistics. English will be a chance for children to develop grammar and composition skills that are linked to computing, such as instruction writing, verbs and adverbs, and asking/answering questions – very useful for critical thinking and problem solving. The links with foundation subjects are endless! Maps, historical research, exploring scientific data, graphic art works…We are really looking forward to see what teachers plan!

Year 3 have already started embracing computing in their cross-curricular learning. This term their topic question is ‘How can we see in the dark?’ Among other things, they have been learning about nocturnal animals, Braille and light and dark. In their Digital Schoolhouse workshops, children have been working with Micro:Bits, exploring how to programme them successfully. They have also been thinking about how these tiny LED lights could be useful if they were stuck in the darkness. What messages could we send? How could we put them altogether to send a message further? What signals could we send with them? They are also starting work on the brightness of these tiny LED lights, considering how to make them even more visible.

What a fantastic way to engage children in a topic but also hone those computing skills! We hope that all year groups embrace computing week, and computing in general, in the same cross-curricular way and begin to realise the importance of these skills to their learning as well as everyday life.

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