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Computer Science Subject Overview


"Everybody should learn to program a computer, because it teaches you how to think"

Steve Jobs

Statement of Intent

We’re not here to teach the kids how to code, or become programmers – we’re here to teach them to think. It’s about practicing the act of deconstructing their thoughts in a clear and structured way. At the heart of our goal is to develop problem solving and pupils being able to think out the processes in a logical, critical way, this will allow them with the development of their programming language knowledge the ability to code their solution. Its about bringing down the curtain by allowing them to see complex things in a simple way (abstraction). Our end goal is to underpin all the key ideas and concepts introduced at KS5 throughout each year from 7-11, building on ideas and knowledge learnt before, so when they leave us they leave us with the skills and knowledge needed in an ever changing digital world. We want our students to leave us as masters of technology and not slaves to it, with informed choices on which platform or software to choose, to being able to create a range of ICT solutions, our learners will leave with the ICT skills to allow them to thrive after school.

KS3 Curriculum Map

Year 7 Overview

In Year 7 we combine ICT with Computer Science. Students will learn about some of the dangers and how to value and manage your behaviour and self worth online. Students will develop their ICT skills needed to access and use the colleges google cloud services to enrich their learning experience at St Marys. Students will learn about the origins of computers and how they have developed and learn and develop their coding skills across four languages. Students will finish the year with an insight into electronics and develop and code a computer system using a Microbit.

Year 7 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    Online Me

    • Socialising and Online Dangers
    • Online Bullying 
    • Digital Footprint and Safety 
    • Online vs the real me

    Google Apps 

    • Creating and using docs through the cloud 
    • Communication and managing work through the cloud

    Secrets Out 

    • Cryptography 
    • Enigma machine
    • Computer model 
    • ASCII encoding
  • Lent Term

    Code Challenge 

    • Small Basic coding (text) 
    • Scratch coding (blocks)

    Kodu Games

    • Elements of Games
    • Explore coding in Kodu
    • Design and make a Kodu game
  • Summer Term

    Micro bit 

    • Understanding the microbit 
    • Writing and installing Microbit code
    • Exploring basic electronic circuits
    • Design, code and create a computer system for a purpose

Year 8 Overview

In Year 8 students main focus is on Computer Science, starting with algorithms and problem solving and then developing their programming skills and knowledge. They learn about the architecture of computers, understand data representation in computers and binary maths and explore storage devices. They also learn to create and edit vector graphics.

Year 8 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    Computer Programming

    • Algorithms and Flowcharts
    • Solving problems with flowol
    • Programming with Small basic
    • Programming with Scratch
  • Lent Term

    Vector Graphics

    • Basic skills 
    • Advanced skills 
    • Vector graphic development
  • Summer Term

    Computer Systems

    • Elements of a computer
    • CPU and FE Cycle
    • Binary representation
    • Binary Maths
    • Storage Devices

Year 9 Overview

In Year 9 the pathway splits between ICT and Computer Science, all students will do ICT and will do the following: Students develop their ICT skills in creating and editing bitmap and vector graphics, they will explore developing a multimedia product, developing their spreadsheet skills and develop their theory knowledge in ICT.

Computer Science option students will do the following: Develop their programming knowledge and ability across scratch, small basic and visual basic, solving a range of problems. They will develop their knowledge of data representation and computer architecture and logic gates.

Year 9 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    Developing programming and problem solving using small basic

  • Lent Term
    • Data representation
    • Computer Architecture and Logic Gates
  • Summer Term

    Further development of programming using visual basic

KS4 Curriculum Map

KS4 Overview

We follow the AQA Computer Science course, which underpins the A-level AQA course providing solid foundations for those wanting to progress at KS5. The course is varied and covers the problem solving and programming elements along with a broad range of topics which develops our learners computer science knowledge and understanding of the digital world.

Year 10 Topics

  • Autumn Term
    • Fundamentals of algorithms
    • Programming
  • Lent Term
    • Fundamentals of data representation
    • Programming
  • Summer Term
    • Computer Systems
    • Cyber Security
    • Ethical, Legal and Environmental Issues in Computing

Year 11 Topics

  • Autumn Term
    • Computer Networks
    • Databases
  • Lent Term

    Recap and Revision Programme

  • Summer Term
    Recap and Revision Programme

A Level Curriculum Map

A Level Overview

We follow the AQA Computer Science course which follows on very well from the AQA Computer Science course at GCSE. This course prepares students well for further progression into University or into the work place. The blend of programming, problem solving and theoretical elements are blended well to develop a computer science student.

Year 12 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    Fundamentals of programming

    • Fundamentals of data structures
    • Systematic approach to problem solving
    • Theory of computation
  • Lent Term
    • Fundamentals of data representation
    • Fundamentals of computer systems
    • Fundamentals of computer organisation and architecture
    • Consequence of computing -Networking
  • Summer Term
    • Object Orientated Programming
    • Databases – SQL, DML

Year 13 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    Fundamentals of Programming and Data structures

    • Fundamental of data structures
    • Algorithms and theory of computation
    • Data representation
  • Lent Term
    • Fundamentals of computer systems
    • Computer architecture
    • Advanced networks 
    • Big Data
    • Functional programming
    • Practical Project
  • Summer Term
    Revision

St Mary's Catholic Academy

Head Teacher: Mr. Simon Eccles
St. Walburga's Road, Blackpool, FY3 7EQ
01253 396286
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Part of The Blessed Edward Bamber Catholic Multi Academy Trust
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