The exciting new focus for the department is Computer Science. In year 7 students have two lessons a fortnight. As a faculty our first priority for students is to ensure safe use of equipment and the internet. Therefore the first term involves researching into the safe use of computing devices (including Smart phones) and the internet.
The second term investigates fundamental areas of computer hardware and binary code. Following this, in term four we explore and learn how computers “think” in the Computational Thinking unit. The skills gained in this unit include algorithms in the form of pseudo code and flowcharts. The logical thinking developed in this unit is a valuable skill that can be transferred to other subjects, e.g. Mathematics and the Sciences.
Following these units the natural progression for students is learning how to program using Python programming language and Scratch. The skills learned here are essential to support the subject transition into Year 8.
In year 8 students have three lessons a fortnight.
In the first term we reinforce the importance of E-safety by revisiting the key issues touched on last year. This is combined with learning Databases, where students create a Social Networking database to understand the impact databases can have on privacy.
Terms two and three cover Web Development and Networks. In web development we look at the fundamentals of HTML and CSS forms. We then move on to Networks, which is a theoretic unit covering the basic principles and architecture of local and wide area networks (LAN and WAN).
Terms four, five and six will be revisiting algorithms and Python programming to support students in the transition to GCSE Computer Science in the next Key Stage.