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General Chat Thread, KS2 ICT curriculum outline in General; Our school is a smallish private bilingual school in Spain following a British curriculum. I am an English/SEN assistant. Our ...
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    KS2 ICT curriculum outline

    Our school is a smallish private bilingual school in Spain following a British curriculum. I am an English/SEN assistant.

    Our primary dept is very good in general, but all the teachers are of an older generation and are computer illiterate, if not technophobic. The ICT curriculum is supposed to be delivered through cross-curricular incorporation into the rest of the lessons, but obviously that isn't happening.

    This year I've been timetabled to be with one of the aforementioned teachers one afternoon a week in our ICT suite, working with nine year old children in KS2.

    During the first term, all the class did was create 'topics', which entailed copying paragraphs out of reference books into word 2003 and adding styling, wordart, images and borders. I've been going round individually showing the pupils some adhoc 'tricks and techniques' in Word depending on their knowledge - there is a very wide variety of skill.

    However, the teacher admits she is just treading water, and doesn't really have any idea how to proceed. Word is the only software she has used at all (nothing more than type letters), and doesn't know anything about the other Office 2003 programs.

    I've agreed to help her organise and teach a more structured syllabus for the rest of the year, using some of the other Office 2003 software.

    I thought I'd be able to find something online regarding what British nine year olds should be learning, to help me flesh-out some lesson plans. But can't seem to find anything very useful.

    The best so far has been:
    flippi website
    and
    curriculum.qca.org.uk ICT KS2

    But it is all so 'woolly' and indistinct! I don't see how I can turn general statements like that into lessons which teach a broader ICT objective whilst also familiarising the pupils with the MS Office software? I certainly don't have the time to use those extreme generalisations to construct a syllabus from scratch! I thought I would find something like:

    Word processing: pupils must learn - skills a, b, c, and d
    Databases: pupils must learn - skills a, b, c
    Graphics: pupils must learn - skills a, b, c, and e

    At the moment I'm leaning toward forgetting the syllabus and just teaching them how to use powerpoint, excel and access at a very basic level, and try to illustrate why they would use each program.

    Advice, links or suggestions are welcome.

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    A few things I would recommend you do.

    First, have a look at joining NAACE as you will be happy how helpful so many of the folks on there will be.

    Second, have a look at INGOTs as a way of introducing a structured curriculum.

    Finally, see what links you can create with a UK primary to use some of their ideas and resources. The ICT Register will give you a good starting point to finding contacts.

    HTH

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anti View Post
    Our school is a smallish private bilingual school in Spain following a British curriculum.
    This thread from the TES site might be handy:

    Free ICT scheme of work - Primary / ICT / TES

    --
    David Hicks

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    Thank you for the advice and links. Very helpful; I'm now on the first rung, with lots of actual lesson plans and resources to look through as opposed to broad cryptic curriculum statements!

    I notice there is a lot of resources for the textease package out there.

    Is it worth buying? My personal feeling is, it may be easier for children to use specialised 'dumbed down' software in the short-term, but realistically at some point they'll have to sit down in front MS Office anyway. Better just to start using MS Office straight away, rather than learn how to use specialist software that they'll never see again?

    Cheers!

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anti View Post
    My personal feeling is, it may be easier for children to use specialised 'dumbed down' software in the short-term, but realistically at some point they'll have to sit down in front MS Office anyway. Better just to start using MS Office straight away, rather than learn how to use specialist software that they'll never see again?
    The idea of ICT is to get pupils to become confident users of computers, not to train them in particular software. This is especially true for primary age pupils, who will likely find being sat in front of a bit of office software lesson after lesson rather tedious. The curriculum can be interpreted and taught in a number of ways, including several ways that pupils will find very dull. There's nothing wrong with straight MS Office training courses, but that sort of thing is maybe best done as a proper certificate (CLAIT or similar) for pupils who'll be going out to work soon (school leaver age).

    Speaking to our languages department yesterday (two teachers who both teach Spanish), they are keen to get started with some ICT-related stuff here, too. I'm planning / hoping to set up a language lab of some kind with a dozen or so workstations in one of our language classrooms. I also hope to set up a webcam for use with a projector, so we can video conference with a whole class at a time. Obviously, we would then need someone to video conference with - is that something you might be interested in? It would tick several boxes for "cross-curricular ICT" and might be a bit more interesting for the children than simply using Word the whole lesson.

    --
    David Hicks

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    > I also hope to set up a webcam for use with a projector, so we can video conference with a whole class at a time. Obviously, we would then need someone to video conference with - is that something you might be interested in?

    Uh, in theory, yes. We've got a suite with a projector. I'd need to get a webcam, and I'm not sure that our internet connection nor our Pentium4 computer could handle streaming video; I'd need to test it.

    What video software would you use? MSN? Skype?
    Year group?
    Timescale?
    Context? (Eg. tying it in with 'cultural exchange' projects)
    We'd want our children to practise English; I suppose you'd want yours to practise Spanish.. how would we work that?

    PM me to talk more about the possibilities.

    Cheers.

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    TBH the starting point needs to be you running some training for the staff to get them feeling comfortable with using the computers. They won't teach using it, because they don't use PCs themselves.

    The school you are describing is mine 4 years ago.

    It has been a slow and painful journey, but the teachers are becoming more and more fluent in their computer use and as a result using computers in their teaching more and more. I'd say we only have one teacher now who really struggles.

    I think the real change happened when we managed to get Interactive Whiteboards and PCs in every classroom. Initially we only had the ICT Suite.

    Only yesterday our French teacher was cheerfully announcing the success of a PowerPoint she'd put together over half term to illustrate masculine and feminine. As she was one of the most resistant to change, it really pleased me hear her enthusiasm for having an IWB available.

    We do have EasyTeach (it's tedious to install) and the younger year groups use it extensively.
    We also make use of BBC - Schools - Dance Mat Typing - Home and KAZ for keyboard skills

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    I aggree with elsiegee40. You need to target the teachers first. As you pointed out that you went round doing ad-hock teaching with the pupils,you would be better off training the teachers first and have them delivery a better lesson. Of course you can help with suggestions for lesson content etc, but the person delivering the lesson really needs to know what they are teaching. Its easy to say you only have to stay one step ahead, but computers tend to throw up all sorts of messages which can confuse users. How interested are your staff in learning new computer skills? If they are willing you could run some basic skills class for small groups of teachers.

    One thing to consider, is it your job to create a syllabus for the pupils? The only reason I'm asking is that the teachers have had the training for this sort of thing, have you had similar training? I would be wary of suggesting that they forget the syllabus, but would lean more towards providing information and resources for the teachers to pick out things that they find usefull.

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    Andie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elsiegee40 View Post
    The school you are describing is mine 4 years ago.

    ...

    I think the real change happened when we managed to get Interactive Whiteboards and PCs in every classroom. Initially we only had the ICT Suite.
    Same here, although about 6 years ago. I was initally employed as an ICT Teaching Assistant as well as a Techie. My being in on the classes did help the confidence of teachers, but training the teachers has to be the key. If you're not careful, you can otherwise end up in the situation of teaching the lessons yourself (the "but you're much better at this than me" scenario), and then the teachers never improve.

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