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ICT 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. Its 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. It's 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 Vector Graphics

  • Lent Term

    Developing Bitmap Graphics, Multimedia Product

  • Summer Term

    Spreadsheet modelling

KS4 Curriculum Map

KS4 Overview

At the time of writing students taking KS4 ICT study for a BTEC certification. This is an excellent hands on qualification that builds pupils confidence in a range of skills; this includes spreadsheet manipulation, data interpretation and modelling, user interface design, report writing and many areas that link to exam theory.

There are two units of coursework that are delivered in year 10 and an examination in January of Year 11 with the option to resit in the summer term of Year 11.

The coursework elements provide valued skills needed in today's world. The exam element provides students with a wider understanding of how IT influences all areas of life and provides context with how IT support businesses and impacts the world.

Year 10 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    User Interface Design

  • Lent Term
    • User Interface
    • Design & Spreadsheet Data Modelling
  • Summer Term

    Spreadsheet Data Modelling

Year 11 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    Examination Theory

  • Lent Term

    Examination Theory & Exam

  • Summer Term

    Resits if required & improving coursework if required

A Level Curriculum Map

A level overview

At the time of writing students taking ICT in 6th Form study the Extend Diploma pathway of the Cambridge Technical qualification.

The course is comprised of two exam units and three coursework units. The examination content introduces students to a broad range of topics most of which can be found in industry standard certifications and so provide an excellent entry point to those looking at going into IT infrastructure or a similar role.

The coursework enables pupils to develop strong report writing skills with Harvard referencing used to accurately cite sources of information to back up their arguments. This is an essential skill for university studies and we have been commended by the examiner for our approach to teaching students how to do this.

The units we chose for coursework currently focus on mobile technology, virtual and augmented reality, and computer systems. There are several hands-on tasks and practicals that users partake in to develop their understanding of computers and software.

Year 12 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    Exam Unit 1

  • Lent Term

    Exam Unit 1 & Exam Unit 2

  • Summer Term

    Exam Unit 2 & Examinations

Year 13 Topics

  • Autumn Term

    Coursework Unit 18

  • Lent Term

    Coursework Unit 5

  • Summer Term

    Coursework Unit 12

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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