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Coding In The Classroom

Published on 05/03/15

Since it was announced that coding was due to be added to the curriculum in 2013, it’s created excitement amongst technology businesses and educators. This new addition to the ICT syllabus switches up lessons previously focused around Word and Excel skills, and replacing them with computer science and digital literacy instead.

This new curriculum is not only hoped to revitalise ICT lessons for younger years, but also create a new generation of tech-savvy graduates, able to fill much needed positions across the digital industry.

Not just ICT skills…

Learning to code at a young age doesn’t just improve technological understanding, but can also develop other areas of knowledge. In a similar way that learning a musical instrument not only helps with learning to read music, it also helps with dexterity and confidence. Learning the basics of coding aims to help children to problem solve, as well as think logically and creatively.

What will children be learning?

The coding curriculum is split into different year groups, each focussing on a separate area.

  • Key Stage 1: Students will learn about algorithms are, which will not always involve computers. These may be explained using alternatives – such as the steps required in a recipe, and how this leads to the final product. They will also take their first steps in decoding simple problems, as well as developing reasoning skills.
  • Key Stage 2: The next stage in the curriculum sees students learning about more complex programs with specific goals, as well as system variables. They will still be developing their logical reasoning skills and learning to use websites and other online services.
  • Key Stage 3: Once children enter secondary school they will start learning about programming languages, to create their own programs. Pupils will be learning simple Boolean logic, working with binary numbers, and looking at how computer hardware and software work together.