National Curriculum: Beverly Clarke on computing
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National Curriculum: Beverly Clarke on computing

Hi I’m Beverly Clarke, I’m Head of
Computing here at Sunbury Manor School. When the new curriculum came out I
started looking for resources to support myself and my teacher and
I was doing some research one evening and came across Computing At
Schools and the resources were excellent. As I did some more reading,
I felt it was something I could become involved in being a computing science
graduate and also having worked in corporate IT. Being a teacher, I thought well let’s see
what I can do and support the community. Being a help lead is all about enthusiasm,
it’s a volunteer position, you put in your own hours, it’s
as good as you are basically. Today I am running a primary hub because I
realised there was a need to support our local primary schools. I’m going to show them the concept of
packet switching, which may seem daunting to someone who’s
not versed in computing. I’m going to explain what a packet
is. I’m also going to link it
cross-curricularly with geography, so that there is a cross-curricular element
and we’re going to related to IP addresses so that students and teachers then
understand the concept of an IP address. The whole point of this session is to
teach computing without computers, so there is not an investment in lots of
resources. It’s a simple activity, it’s interactive, it’s going to be fun, its
going to generate a lot of conversation. Sometimes I think colleagues may be
apprehensive about the new curriculum because we haven’t been trained in it,
it’s not something we grew up with. I myself I’m not well-versed in
programming. We all have strengths that we bring
to computing. As a department everyone
will have a strength. Sharing of resources is key. Our session today, showing teaching
computing without computers, is a perfect example of a reason not to
be scared. This is accessible by everyone. With the new curriculum we are in a
state of transition from ICT to computing, so it’s a journey.
We have started updating our wall displays so that students can see
this transition gradually. I also want all the teachers to know
that it doesn’t have to be done instantly. It is transition and it’s
going to take a bit of time to get up to speed and to grips with the new
curriculum and not to put pressure on ourselves. We don’t want to fail,
we just want this to be very successful. I find that children are naturally
curious so we harness this curiosity, show them lots of new and exciting ways
to use computers and then with that enthusiasm they then go along and
start trying out and testing and become natural problem solvers. They develop their computational thinking
skills and on the back of that, once they’re happy to solve problems and
think around problems, they then come up the fantastic ideas. I’m currently training to be a
Master Teacher. A Master Teacher is someone whose
schools has received funding for them to train and upskill. Once a Master Teacher has upskilled they
are then in a position to support their community with resources and with ideas
and to run CPD sessions.


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