Computing at Waverley is based on the principles of computer science: understanding how to program a computer in order to carry out tasks and create new things. We have based our curriculum on an excellent Rising Stars scheme, which takes the children through the breadth of the National Curriculum on computing, including creating games and animations, designing apps, building websites, understanding how to utilise networks and the internet, and how to communicate safely and effectively online.
The main software platforms we use to deliver the curriculum, such as Scratch and Kodu, are free online, meaning that they are available at all times, whether accessed inside or outside of school. This gives the children a great opportunity to develop their programming skills at home as well as in the Waverley computing suite.
We have also made Office 365 available for the pupils of Years 5 and 6, enabling them to create projects and record research outside of school, whatever device they happen to use to access the internet.
In Key Stage 1, the children are introduced to the essential principles of computing in a practical, classroom-based way. They work on algorithms as real-life instructions, and use tools such as our marvellous Bee-Bots to explore how to program and direct basic computers. The children go on to create art and presentations using the school computing suite.
In Lower Key Stage 2, the children begin more advanced programming, using their understanding of algorithms and instructional thinking to create animations and games through online software such as Scratch. They also begin to explore networking, web design and email.
With a full set of programming skills, the children in Upper Key Stage 2 will apply their knowledge to real-life problems and explore more advanced areas of computer science. This will involve building apps and games, designing websites, and compiling and presenting research.
Alongside this broad and stimulating curriculum, we also teach the children the vital importance of staying safe online. This is essential, as issues of cyber-bullying, grooming, identity theft, trolling, and the distribution of inappropriate content can have extremely serious personal consequences.
Messaging and social networks are major areas of focus in our e-safety discussions, but it is equally important that children understand the potential dangers in online gaming, email, safe use of search engines, and screen-time. If parents or carers have any concerns about their child's use of digital technology, or any questions about how the school utilises the internet and online devices, they should consult our safety policies or get in touch with the school directly.