Curriculum and online safety
Computing at Damers incorporates many different forms of digital media. Children from Foundation up to Year 4 can expect to program robots, collaborate on documents, create digital books, research on the internet, communicate, under supervision, with others online (within a safe environment), and much more.
At Damers, we teach discreet Computing lessons following the ‘Rising Stars – Switched On Computing’ scheme but we also use technology where appropriate to enhance other areas of the curriculum. In an increasingly digital world we have to ensure that our children are skilled in using technology in all areas of work. This is also the case for e-safety. While E-safety is implicit within all Computing lessons we also ensure that the children at Damers understand how to safely communicate online in any context. (For links to some fantastic online safety resources click here.)
Mr Oram and Miss Barnes also run a Digital Leaders’ club in which children in Key Stage 2 who have shown a special interest in computing get the chance to test run new technologies. They also work with their own and other classes to help out with technology.
Google Apps for Education
Two years ago we made the switch to using G-Suite (formerly Google Apps for Education). This is a free, cloud-based service for schools, colleges and universities. We made the decision to move for several reasons; naturally, cost was one of these but workflow and collaboration were the main driving forces.
We are now at the point where all staff are using G-Suite for admin and teaching but more importantly the children are using them too in order to research, collaborate, program and much more.
To complement our move to G-Suite, we have been investing in Chromebooks for the staff and children. We are currently at the point where there is a 1:1 ratio of Chromebooks to children in Years 3 and 4, and roughly 1:3 in each Year 2 class.
Google Apps for Education meets the requirements of the E.U. Data Protection Directive. Damers also signs up to Google’s own data-processing amendments and model contract clauses. See our ‘European Data Protection Law – Compliance’ document on our Policies page for more information.
Google have recently recognised our effective and innovative use of technology by awarding us the status of ‘Google Reference School’, one of only 34 in the UK.
While there is no doubt that G-Suite and Chromebooks have enhanced both teaching and learning we still ensure that there are plenty of opportunities for children to use other devices such as iPads and PCs. All the children at Damers have a wide and varied Computing experience which prepares them well for the expectations of middle and secondary school and the use of technology in the future.