Mrs Sherwin – Teacher of Computer Science
Mr Southern – Teacher of Computer Science
ICT at St John Fisher aims to equip students with the knowledge and skills to enable them to access the ever changing world of technological innovation. The aim is to give them transferable skills that they can use in future education, the workplace and everyday life. There is an understanding that e-safety is essential and we integrate this across the curriculum to ensure students have the skills and information required to stay safe online.
In KS3 students access computer science via the technology carousel. They study computer science for 8 weeks in the school year. In this time, they have 3 lessons per fortnight. The KS3 curriculum is designed to carry on from previous learning in KS2 and prepares students for the rigour of the GCSEs. Alongside this our goal is to make students effective and safe users of ICT.
In year 7 students learn how to program the computer using both graphical and text-based development environments. In year 8 data representation is investigated. Students learn how the computer uses binary to represent data, images, sound and text. In year 9 we revisit text-based programming and students learn more advanced techniques such as arrays and sorting algorithms. At the end of each unit all students have two lessons on various aspects of e-safety.
At KS4 we offer two qualifications:
GCSE Computer Science
Cambridge National Certificate in Creative I-media
Offering two qualifications enables us to cater for the talents and abilities of all students. The Cambridge National Certificate is ideal for the more creative students, who enjoy using the computer software to create graphics and websites. The GCSE is geared towards the more academic students who enjoy programming and using logic to solve problems.
We always endeavour to create interest and enthusiasm in lessons by contextualising the topics and using a variety of teaching styles and innovative teaching resources. In extra-curricular time we take part in national computing challenges such as CyberDiscovery and Cyber First for Girls. We also offer a lunchtime computer club. Students are invited on a trip to Berlin to consolidate learning and raise aspirations.
In Key Stage Three, students complete one practical and one written assessment per half term. These take place in the last week of each half term.
In Key Stage Four, students are assessed by their course work, classwork and homework.