Computing at All Hallows is a rigorous academic subject which has strong links with the suite of STEM subjects. A high-quality Computing education equips pupils to use computational thinking to become creators of digital technologies, digital artefacts and computing knowledge.
The All Hallows Computing department consists of 5 specialist teachers who have a passion for Computing.
We want to inspire future generations of Computer Scientists, Website designers and Programmers. We are enthusiastic about our subjects and we love it when we see students who share that passion and enthusiasm. We want to teach students in an engaging way. We also want them to have the opportunity to try out the widest range of topics and tasks that we can facilitate.
The Computing curriculum at All Hallows gives pupils the opportunity to study the 3 main strands of Computing – Computer Science, Digital Literacy and E-Safety.
Computer science is at the heart of the All Hallows computing curriculum. It covers principles such as algorithms, data representation, programming and data structures. Understanding Computer Science enables students to more fully understand how computers are used and how programs can be used to create digital media through the use of Information technology. This knowledge and these skills feed directly in to our KS4 GCSE Computer Science course.
Our Information technology based learning provides a context for the use of computers within society. Within IT there is a focus on knowledge of how computers are used in industry and the gaining a working knowledge of the methods and programmes to create digital media such as videos, animations or 3D models. This knowledge and these skills feed directly in to our KS4 CNAT iMedia course.
Our Digital literacy element of our curriculum aims to ensure that our pupils know how to use technology safely, responsibly and securely. Within digital literacy, students learn a wide range of knowledge including how to exercise caution when searching, being able to identify incorrect information, and be able to use devices safely and securely.
The Computing curriculum at Key Stage 3 allows for a gradual progression of Computing knowledge, understanding and skills. All 3 strands of Computing will be visited over the 3 years with the depth of projects that pupils study developing over time.
- Mr P Carr (Head of Computing)
- Mr D Jousiffe (Head of Technology & teacher of Computing)
- Mrs L Rostron (Teacher of Computing & Technology)
- Mrs J Caw (Teacher of Computing & FP&N)
- Miss Dasu (Teacher of Computing and Technology)
The ICT Department has two purpose built rooms each containing 33 computers. We also have several specialist software applications such as Spike Prime Lego programming, VEX programming, Scratch and Python in addition to the Microsoft Office Suite.
Key Stage 3 Curriculum
In Year 7 pupils study through:
Introduction to school systems (4/5 weeks) – Files/Folders, E-mail, One Drive, Base line test, Staying safe on line
Understanding Computers (7 weeks) – Internal Parts, External Parts, Sensors, Hardware, Software, Digital Devices
Computer crime and cyber security (StoryboardThat) – Social engineering, Computer Misuse, Copyright, Data Protection, Health & Safety.
Spike Prime Robotics (7 weeks): Introduction to Robotics. Through the assembly and programming of a Lego Spike Prime robot kits, students have the opportunity to investigate key Scratch principles as well as cross curricular links with Technology and Geography; such as problem solving, motion, forces, plate tectonics and earthquakes. Students learn to adapt their robots to be able to complete tasks in a range of different physical environments through a variety of challenges.
Programming with EdPy and the Edison Robot (7 weeks) – Functions (including input parameters), Expressions in Python, The ‘while’ loop and indentation, The ‘for’ loop, The range()’ function, Strings in Python.
Spreadsheets with Excel (5 weeks) – Identify columns, rows, cells, and cell references, Use basic formulas with cell references , sort and filter data, Analyse data, Use the functions SUM, COUNT, MAX, and MIN, AVERAGE, COUNTIF, and IF, Conditional formatting
In Year 8 pupils study through:
Staying Safe Online – Messenger Apps, Digital Footprints, Fake News, Online Gaming, Cyberbullying & Trolling
Visual Identity and Digital Graphics with PhotoPea (7 weeks) – Techniques to plan visual identity and digital graphics, Create visual identity and digital graphics (tools and techniques), Technical skills to source, create and prepare assets for use within digital graphics.
VEX IQ Robotics (7 weeks): Students have the opportunity to assemble, programme and control a number of VEX IQ clawbots. Students learn about programming physical robots using VEX IQ version of Scratch and Python programming languages. Technical knowledge of sensors and outputs are key in this SOW. There are cross curricular links with Technology and Maths in this SOW. Students will get hands on experience at using gears, levers, sensors, mechanisms and pulleys. Students will learn about how to use gear ratios, how to program their robots to respond to 6 different types of sensor and how to develop their robot so it can successfully complete a range of challenges in the schools VEX IQ arena.
Data Representation (7 weeks) – The Binary Number System, Binary Addition, Representing Images, Representing Sounds, Representing Characters
Computational Thinking & Logic (7 weeks) – Logical Thinking, Logic Gates, Algorithmic Thinking, Abstraction, Decomposition
Programming with EdPy and the Edison robot. (7 weeks) – Variables and mathematical operations, Flowcharts and pseudo code, ‘while’ loops including infinite loops, Event based programming, ‘if’ and ‘if/else’ statements, Classes and object oriented programming
In Year 9 pupils study through:
Online Safety & Cyber Security (7 weeks) – Sexting, Online Grooming, Live Streaming, Malicious Software, Social Engineering
Animation with Audio (Wick Editor) (7 weeks) – Planning an Animation with Audio, Creating an Animation with Audio, Reviewing an Animation with Audio
Python Programming (Replit) (7 weeks) – Data Types, Programming concepts, Arithmetic operations, Relational operations, Boolean operations, Data structures, Input/output, String handling operations, Random number generation, Structured programming, Robust and secure programming
Computer Systems (7 weeks) – Hardware and software, Boolean logic, Systems architecture, The CPU, CPU Performance, Fetch-Execute cycle, Memory (RAM, ROM, Cache, Registers), Secondary Storage, Cloud Storage, Embedded Systems
Databases including Research methods using questionnaires. (7 weeks) – Introduction to databases, Creating a database table, Queries, input forms, Creating a report, Testing
Key Stage 4 Curriculum
Students choose their GCSE course at the end of Year 9. The range of Computing syllabuses available to pupils during 2019/20 are:
GCSE Computer Science (AQA)
Cambridge National iMedia (OCR)
The GCSE Computer Science course features 2 terminal exams currently weighted 50% each. Students study using a range of techniques including online flashcards and questioning in the form of Seneca, programming through Python and theory based learning using PG Online resources.
The Cambridge National iMedia course consists of 2 pieces of non-examined assessment each worth 30% of the overall grade along with a final exam which is worth 40% of the grade. Students will complete the following units for non-examined assessment.
- RO93 – Creative imedia in the media industry
- RO94 – Visual identity and digital graphics
- RO95 – Characters and comics OR RO96 – Animation with Audio
The examination will be unit RO93. Students will have one opportunity to sit this exam. This will take place at the end of year 11.
Our GCSE Examination Boards
For GCSE Computer Science we have opted for the AQA exam board as we feel this best suits the needs of our students.
We also offer a Cambridge national iMedia course which is a Level 2 qualification and use the OCR exam board.
Extra Curricular Activities and Visits
The department organises and runs several educational visits. The main one being a biannual West Coast of America trip run jointly with Geography and Technology. The trip takes Y9, 10 and 11 Geography, Technology and Computing students to San Francisco, through Silicon Valley (stopping for Visits at Google and the Tech interactive), to The Grand Canyon for a Helicopter ride, on to Las Vegas and the Hoover Dam, through Death Valley and on to LA to visit Universal studios and the Staples centre. We also take students on an annual visit to The Big Bang Fair in Birmingham as well as local and national trips to a wide range of STEM competitions such as VEX Robotics, FutureChef, Faraday challenge, Rotary Challenge and EEP Lego Robotics.
Computing teachers help to run an extremely popular STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) club which is open to all year groups and gives students a huge range of amazing opportunities to participate in regional and national competitions. Within the last year, the STEM club has won several of these competitions such as the regional Rotary Club competition and the IET Faraday competition. They were also finalists at the AluPro and EEP Robotics competitions, winning an award for presentation at the latter. We have also had a regional FutureChef competitor this year. STEM club runs on Mondays after school, is co-ordinated by Mrs Caw and involves a range of Technology and Computing staff.