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Teaching & Learning

The Key Stage 3 curriculum is designed to build on previous learning in Key Stage 2 and prepares students for the rigour of their GCSE studies. In Key Stage 3, students work on a carousel of subjects between Computing, Technology and Reading.

In Year 7 students have two rotations of the carousel with the Computing department over the academic year. Throughout this curriculum time students will be taught how to use computer systems effectively and various computer hardware. They will learn how to program, understanding several key algorithms, by undertaking a creative game design project and be taught how to stay safe online.

In Year 8 students build on the foundations of Year 7. We develop skills in Microsoft Excel which interleaves with Mathematics, programming and develops lifelong skills of monetary management. Additionally, students in Year 8 are afforded the opportunity to develop skill and knowledge, alongside creativity, data representation which includes sound representation and Audacity software.

In Year 9 we revisit text-based programming and students learn more advanced techniques such as arrays and sorting algorithms. To build on sound editing, Year 9 create and edit digital graphics using software such as Adobe Fireworks and Photoshop. This means across the three years of student all pupils are given a broad and balanced curriculum to fully prepare them for the Key Stage Four qualifications which are outlined below.

When students reach Year 9, they can opt for either OCR GCSE Computer Science or OCR Cambridge Nationals Creative iMedia as option subjects to study at Key Stage 4 (Years 10 and 11). These are two quite different courses which develop different skills sets.

GCSE Computer Science covers topics including system architecture, memory and storage, computer networks, network security, system software and the impact of Computing on the wider world. Moreover, algorithms are explored, programming fundamentals, programming languages and IDEs, Boolean logic, and the creation of various robust programs.

Outside of the classroom pupils will be given homework which allows learning to continue between lessons and allows teachers to assess which students can recall from lessons.

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