A day course aimed at supporting ICT/Computing teachers who are seeking to introduce greater rigour and technical content, including the learning of programming, into their ICT/ Computing lessons during KS3 and KS4.
The course consisted of four workshops: Thinking about Algorithms, Programming in Python, Programming Concepts, Assessment Tasks. Each workshop contained material suitable for lessons at both KS3 and KS4. The content and level has been informed by the Computing at School Curriculum document and by the available specifications for GCSE Computing/Computer Science.
Session 1 - Thinking about Algorithms
This session discussed algorithms and the way they should be introduced with reference to flow-diagrams and pseudocode.
The session referred to the following resources:
- CS Unplugged - http://csunplugged.org
- CS4FN - http://cs4fn.org
- Youtube videos of algorithms performed as a dance, e.g. selection sort and quicksort.
- TED talk - "How Algorithms Shape Our World" - http://www.ted.com/talks/kevin_slavin_how_algorithms_shape_our_world.html
- Jeannette Wing - "Computational Thinking", Communications of the ACM 2006, Vol. 49, Issue 3. Available on-line - www.cs.cmu.edu/~wing/publications/Wing06.pdf
Session 2 - Programming in Python
This session was an introduction to the Python programming language in the computing lab. Participants were tasked with writing a simple Python program.
Session 3 - Programming concepts
This session discussed programming concepts and explored how they are independent of the programming language chosen. Python and Java code examples were used in this session.
Session 4 - Delivering Computing Controlled Assessments
No material available at present.
The day was delivered by Steve Russ, Matt Leeke, Bob Bird, Russell Boyatt and Stephen Jarvis who are academic or research staff in the Department of Computer Science at Warwick. Susan Robson is Head of Computing at Bedales in Petersfield where she teaches GCSE and A-level Computing. She is author of the text book 'GCSE Computing: OCR Specification'.