At Essendene Lodge School we value the importance of Computing in education for both teaching and learning. There are interactive Smart white boards in every classroom that are used in all lessons by both teachers and pupils. We also have twenty laptops for use in every classroom, providing one per pupil, and are used with all pupils from reception to year 6. All classes have one dedicated Computing lesson per week and plenty of opportunities to use computers for research, presentation and cross curricular learning.
Children start using technology in preschool. Their first experiences with the interactive whiteboard are integrated into their learning and may involve tracing letters with their fingers or playing maths games. As the children enter reception, the children are introduced to the school laptops and are encouraged to improve their recognition of upper case letters by logging into the school network, increase their typing speed and improving their hand/eye coordination with the simultaneous use of the touchpad and cursor on the screen.
As the children move into KS1, the children are taught to understand the basic principles of computer programming through Scratch. They are introduced to algorithms and learn how to create and debug simple programs. In addition, they start using Microsoft Office to practice their word processing skills as well as learning to create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve the documents in their personal folder.
In KS2 the children apply all the skills they have learned in previous years and begin to use technology across other areas of the curriculum. They continue to build up their knowledge of Microsoft Office and its features and learn how to use the programs in more depth. Using MSW Logo, Scratch and other coding software, the children are taught how to explain how simple algorithms work and create a sequence of them with different variables to achieve a specific outcome.
With technology advancing at a rate faster than most of us would perhaps like, our children are at the forefront of exposure to this advanced technological age with their use of the internet, mobile phones, laptops, computers and tablets. As the children need to learn and embrace the usefulness of these technologies, they also need to learn how to use it safely and understand how they can keep themselves safe online.
Within each unit of work there are regular and specific opportunities to understand and discuss all aspects of e-Safety. There is also a visitor from the local police who comes to talk to the children about e-Safety and stranger danger.
Tips to Ensure your Child Stays Safe Online
- Offer reassurance and support. Don’t be afraid to ask questions
- Tell your child that if they are being bullied to always keep the evidence
- Block the bullies
- Learn how to report and where to go for further support
- Talk to your child about online grooming
- Talk to them about their online friends
- Let your child know that you are always there for support and you understand how easy it is for things to get out of control online
- Learn how to report any inappropriate contact made to your child online
- Block sites that are not age appropriate
- Limit inappropriate and illegal material
- Set timings – automatic switch off at bedtime
- Monitor activity