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Charford First School

Computer Science

Computer Science

This strand of the curriculum links closely to the control element of the old ICT curriculum.

Pupils need to understand what algorithms are – this is the basis of what they need to know in order to write computer programs. Each programming language has its own vocabulary and grammar but they all follow the same type of logic.  It is possible and beneficial to learn computer science away from computers or other digital devices. Role play and kinaesthetic activities can help pupils develop logical reasoning.

Pupils need to be able to write algorithms and programs. They also need to be able to find mistakes (bugs) and fix them.  When children write programs they will learn that there are often different ways of getting the right outcome, and they need to be able to evaluate the programs to decide which is the most efficient.

While children will make mistakes in their own programs it is often easier to find mistakes in code that has been produced by other people. Providing pupils with example programs give them the opportunity to predict what they will do and identify any bugs. Working collaboratively is also an effective method.  As pupils get older the programs they write will become more complicated. They will need to use sequence, selection, repetition and variables in their programs.

The computer science strand also requires knowledge of networks and how searches are performed.


BBC Learning - What Is Coding

BBC Learning - What Is An Algorithm

Computer coding and programming has become an important element of the 2014 National Curriculum, and is taught to all year groups throughout school at varying levels. This enables our children to become ‘Computational Thinkers’, developing the necessary skills to be effective problem solvers, and our curriculum provides a number to opportunities to practise specific programming skills which are likely to form a large part of the future careers of our students in years to come.

Coding websites to try at home:   (log on details for this website have been sent out via the school app, or can be obtained from the class teacher)

Where to find help:

Here is a list of great apps, software and websites that can help your child with learning to code, you could even give them a go yourself:

  • Codecademy – a great starting point to get familiar with code for free.
  • Scratch – learn to program your own interactive stories, games and animations and share them around the world.
  • Code Club – find out if there’s a club near you for your child to join (or perhaps you have the skills to run one locally!). If that's not an option, Code Club has made all its UK projects available online for free, an amazing resource for parents and teachers alike. Look through the Code Club term-by-term project list and get started now.
  • Kids Ruby – a fun and easy way to help your child learn Ruby programming.
  • The Tynker iPad app is free and offers coding puzzles and games to get you started.
  • BBC Bitesize has a Computing area for KS1 and KS2, packed with films and simple explanations.
  • Kodu allows children as young as 5 to code their own games. Free download (PC only).
  • Try the Barclays Digital Driving Licence for a free online course to computing.