Digital Skills Blog

Time to Code – Business in the Community

Business in the Community Northern Ireland (BITC) recently provided a new digital skills programme called 'Time to Code' for primary schools.

Many primary schools are keen to help their pupils learn to code. Providing lessons in coding can help schools cover the requirements of the Northern Ireland curriculum for Using ICT.

CCEA were involved in advising BITC on the type of support schools need to introduce this aspect of Using ICT in primary schools.

Key Stage 3 {Digital Skills} Coding in the Classroom

CCEA, in collaboration with Kainos, have provided training on coding with Python for Key Stage 3 ICT/Computing teachers from the Fermanagh area.

The aim of the training was to assist with the upskilling of teachers and to encourage schools to teach programming and coding at Key Stage 3. This initiative follows a series of one day workshops on a range of digital skills that were attended by over 200 teachers.

Online Scratch training for primary teachers

FutureLearn has developed an online course specifically for primary teachers who want to learn key programming concepts using Scratch as the programming language.

This begins in February 2018. The time commitment is estimated at two hours a week over a four week period.

Computational thinking in primary

Computational thinking feature concepts such as decomposition (breaking a problem down), writing algorithms (a list of instructions) and being creative.

The approach can enhance work in programming with Scratch or any other programming language you are using with primary children.

It will also align with Thinking Skills and Personal Capabilities in the Northern Ireland curriculum.

Primary Coding – Support with Scratch

If you are interested in developing computational thinking and coding in your primary classroom, there are a number of initiatives that you can explore.

If you want to learn about the programming language Scratch and you’re the type of person who prefers to learn with others, the following are some options.

Primary coding!

During EU CodeWeek, CCEA visited St Peter's and St Paul's Primary School in Foreglen to experience a number of coding activities using a variety of software, hardware and programmable devices.

Digital Skills training for Key Stage 3 teachers

In December, CCEA will be providing a series of one-day courses aimed at Key Stage 3 teachers of discrete ICT/Computing. The courses are available to book through the Training & Support section of our website. Below is a brief outline of their content.

Support videos for the new GCE Digital Technology

Part of the revision of the Legacy GCE ICT specification was to add more computational thinking to the new GCE Digital Technology specification.

In Unit AS 1: Approaches to Systems Development, there are learning outcomes assigned to a section entitled ‘Programming’ where students are required to demonstrate their knowledge in order to describe the fundamental programming concepts of sequence, selection and iteration, including count-controlled and condition-controlled loops.

EU Code Week is celebrating it’s 5th birthday

EU Code Week is celebrating its 5th birthday on 7-22 October 2017. We’re encouraging schools to create an app, a game, a website, make an interactive story or make a robot move.

Throughout the two weeks of EU Code Week, CCEA will be signposting you to some free resources and showing you how coding can fit into the Northern Ireland Curriculum.

Free online training in film-making and animation

Develop skills in using filmmaking and animation digital tools in this free three week online course from FutureLearn beginning 30 October 2017. Integrating film and animation into your lessons helps pupils develop their skills as digital makers and also enhances their understanding of the topic they are studying.

FutureLearn Online Course: Filmmaking and Animation in the Classroom

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