Our curriculum builds on students’ achievements at primary school, introducing new skills and new contexts. Students study six units in the year.
Unit 1: Safe on-line – students learn about our network and how to stay safe on-line
Unit 2: My virtual pet – students create a virtual pet using the Scratch block programming language
Unit 3: Under the hood – students learn some of the basics of computer hardware and networks, and learn how the binary number system works.
Unit 4: Kode it! – students use a 3D games programming environment to create and program 3D games.
Unit 5: The camera never lies – students explore some of the moral and ethical issues involved in using IT, particular its power to present reality differently.
Unit 6: Game on – designing a computer game in Scratch
The year 8 curriculum develops students’ skills further, and introduces more programming
Unit 1: Step up to programming – students learn the key programming structures in a text-based programming language, creating a series of maths programs.
Unit 2: The imitation game – students learn who Alan Turing was and attempt to code a realistic chat bot using a text based programming language.
Unit 3: Crack the code – students learn about encryption techniques and create a simple program to turn text into code.
Unit 4: Getting graphical – students learn how images are represented in computers, and have their first introduction to event driven programming, designing a simple paint program.
Unit 5: I love my mobile – students learn about how data packets travel round a network. They write a simple website using HTML and CSS, appropriate for viewing on a mobile.
Unit 6: Mind your own business – a team challenge to create and market a company
The Year 9 curriculum introduces more complex skills and challenges students to learn some of the key theoretical concepts in computing.
Unit 1: You’ve been hacked – students learn about social engineering and cyber security. They create a program to generate a secure password.
Unit 2: Sort it out – students learn some of the key sorting algorithms and write programs to implement some of them
Unit 3: Sounds good – students learn how sound is represented in computer systems and code a simple music player.
Unit 5: Sell it on-line – students learn about databases and SQL, and create a database back-end to their e-commerce site
Unit 6: Getting app-lause – students create a simple mobile app
Exam board: AQA
Specification: GCSE computer science 4512 [this is the current link - http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/computer-science-and-it/gcse/computer-science-8520 ]
In Years 10 and 11 students have the chance to study a GCSE computer science course. Computational thinking is at the heart of many of today’s challenges, in all areas of business and industry. Students don’t need to have ambitions to be a programmer to get a huge amount from the course, which teaches them the skills to analyse and solve problems, to think logically and to test solutions systematically.
Students learn key knowledge about how computers work; how computers represent data in different forms; how computers deal with common problems like sorting and searching, and compressing data; how networks work; how cyber-security can be maintained; and what the legal and moral framework for the user of IT is. Alongside this students learn the key concepts of computer programming using a text-based programming language – by the end of the course they should be able to produce their own small application to solve a real-world problem.
The following units are studied in Year 10:
Unit 1 – computer systems
Unit 2 – binary and hexadecimal number systems
Unit 3 – representing text, images and sound
Unit 4 – compression techniques and Boolean logic
Unit 5 – computer networks
Unit 6 – the process of software design
The following units are studied in Year 11:
Unit 1 – cyber security and social engineering
Unit 2 – controlled assessment task
Unit 3 – software categories
Unit 4 – ethical, legal and moral issues
Unit 5 – revision
In each year group about 30% of the time will be spent developing students’ knowledge of key program flow control methods; their ability to use the techniques of structured programming; their knowledge of data structures and their ability to use techniques to write robust code .Their skills in this area are tested in the controlled assessment in Year 11, and in both exam papers.