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Have you claimed your digital badge?
The NCCE have launched an exciting new initiative to formally recognise your contribution to computing education in England.
Awarded digitally, our portfolio of badges have been designed to enable you to build your professional profile and celebrate your achievements with your own network.
They are awarded to participants who have attended any of our face-to-face or remote courses, as part of our primary certificate or the Computer Science Accelerator programme. To date, we have issued to participants who completed courses up to the start of December.
What are the benefits?
- formal recognition of your accreditation
- share and verify your achievements
- build a profile of your skills and knowledge
- display your certificate on your social media profiles, including Twitter and LinkedIn
How do I claim my digital badge?
NCCE digital badges are awarded through a system called Acclaim. Follow these steps to accept your digital certificate:
- you will be notified via email that you have received a digital badge
- click the link included within this email to accept your badge(s)
- create an account on Acclaim – this is completely free of charge and will allow you to build a digital portfolio of your achievements
- share your digital badge via social media – this can also be added onto your LinkedIn profile as a way of showcasing your hard work and dedication
Note: To ensure you receive these email notifications, it is worth adding email@example.com to your Safe Sender list. If you should have been issue a digital badge but have not received a notification email, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
What’s working well in remote computing education?
A recent Ofsted report sought to summarise research into what works well in remote learning. In addition to signposting the relevant parts of the National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE) offer, we asked our Subject Matter Experts what works well in their virtual classroom.
Although learning looks a little different to this time last year, “everything we know about what a quality curriculum looks like still applies” according to Ofsted. Building knowledge in carefully sequenced blocks, not too much at a time, and assessing knowledge remains important including when you’re using textbooks or worksheets instead of live lessons. The NCCE’s curriculum-design CPD is available for teaching at KS1, KS2, KS3 or GCSE, to help you maximise progress as well as to effectively deliver our Teach Computing Curriculum, which includes comprehensive assessment guidance. You can also utilise Teach Computing self-marking subject knowledge assessments through the Eedi online platform, which are free to all secondary schools.
Also unchanged is how cognitive science informs effective teaching. Clarity of explanations has become even more important and the “split attention effect” can impact upon concentration. Semantic waves, worked examples and concept maps are powerful tools, and cognitive load theory is an important factor. Providing an overview of the ‘big picture’, using learning objective graphs for instance, can be helpful to learners navigating the new landscape.
The physical classroom has changed to a virtual one accessed through a digital platform. Subject Matter Expert (SME) Dale Jones recommends melding assignments and Microsoft OneNotes in Teams with files in OneDrive to link together resources, while Andy Webster has had success using a digital platform, to build resources and deliver everything centrally; “great AfL opportunities and useful reports generated at the end of each lesson!”.
Short presentations or modelling of new content can work well when followed by exercises or retrieval – this is the model underpinning much of the Oak National Academy computing curriculum based on the work of the NCCE. SME Sarah Chell “starts an online lesson with supporting theory, checks they are all happy and arranges to come back online 10 mins before end of lesson for plenary, keeping tasks shorter”. She recommends “using voice-overs with PowerPoints as it’s not enough to upload a presentation and expect students to just read through”.
Computing is, unsurprisingly, well-suited to the use of online, creative and simulation tools which have been found to work well in remote learning; our remote Python programming courses model how free platforms can support distance learning. SME Gaynor Hudson teaches programming through Code.org with key stage 2 children while Dale Jones provides it for motivated secondary students for independent learning. Gaynor is aiming to teach the Teach Computing 3D modelling unit online, including input from a STEM Ambassador.
New NCCE Report shows thousands of teachers supported by its work
It’s two years since the launch of the NCCE and, since then, we’ve reached thousands of teachers and students through our courses, training, teaching resources, and our network of Computing Hub schools.
Our second anniversary is a good point in time to reflect on the NCCE’s journey so far, so today we’ve published our NCCE Impact Report looking at our work since November 2018.
Read the full report here.
Of course, no-one could have imagined the impact that coronavirus has had on education throughout 2020 and, like schools everywhere, the NCCE adapted quickly to deliver our training courses online.
Also this year, we launched our high-quality Teach Computing Curriculum with over 500 hours of free resources providing everything teachers need to teach computing at key stages 1-4.
Teachers have also shown incredible resilience in the face of sustained pressures, and have continued to work with us to improve computing education across England.
Our NCCE Impact Report bears that out, showing thousands of teachers engaging in our training courses and passing new skills on to their students.
“I am hugely grateful to the teachers, school leaders, and our partners who have supported our ambition,” writes Professor Simon Peyton Jones, Chair of the NCCE, in the report.
“The NCCE is playing an important part in re-imagining computing as a foundational school subject like maths and natural science, which all children should learn to equip them for life and work.
“Computer science is now an explicit part of the curriculum, alongside digital skills and competence. This is a huge opportunity for our young people and our economy.”
We’re also delighted at the feedback from those teachers, with three quarters of secondary school teachers telling us that the NCCE’s professional development (CPD) courses have had a significant impact on their students; 82% of Computer Science Accelerator (CSA) graduates said their colleagues had also benefitted from their knowledge and almost half of teachers (50% for secondary and 47% for primary) said that NCCE courses had helped them to raise the profile and/or priority of computing in their school.
Max Ruddock is one of the 7,600 teachers who have undertaken continuing professional development through the NCCE. Max is an English teacher who was asked to coordinate Computer Science at his school, and attended the NCCE’s Summer School for early career computer science teachers.
“I cannot recommend it highly enough,” he said. “The course provides all participants with the skills, knowledge and pedagogical applications for delivering a world-class computing education and I welcomed the opportunity to discuss current educational research and pedagogy with other participants.”
The NCCE’s work is collaborative and we’re also grateful to our partners whose funding has helped to make this possible, including Arm, BT, Google, IBM, Microsoft, Nationwide and Rolls-Royce.
The NCCE is now set to expand its offer, reach and access, to increase engagement with schools in priority areas, to move beyond early adopters and to remove further barriers to achieving our vision – for every child in every school in England to have a world-leading computing education.
The NCCE’s first two years in numbers:
29,500 teachers engaged from 8,500 primary schools and 3,000 secondary schools.
7,600 teachers have accessed NCCE continuing professional development (CPD) courses.
2,000 teachers and 18,000 students using Isaac Computer Science to support A level Computer Science.
1,300 teachers have now completed the programme to teach Computer Science GCSE.
34 Computing Hubs in schools across England acting as local champions for Computer Science.
275 Computing at School (CAS) communities providing support and networking.
500 hours of learning materials in our Teach Computing Curriculum (TCC).
125,000 TCC units of work downloaded.
Support for Remote Teaching of Computing
These are challenging times for teachers of all subjects and phases of education. Disruption has become the norm, with learners sometimes unable to attend school in-person and schools now having a legal obligation to provide remote education. Teachers have worked hard to adjust to new realities, and schools have performed minor miracles to keep children learning. As things stand, the return to normal operations remains a distant goal.
Schools are now past the ‘emergency response’ phase of remote teaching and into more regular patterns of provision. How, then, can teachers of computing achieve the best possible teaching and learning outcomes for students through online lessons, and maintain the recent progress made in this important subject?
There is a wealth of generic advice and guidance for teachers, supporting teachers of any subject to optimise remote learning:
- The EdTech Demonstrator Programme offers a wealth of advice, for school policy and practice. Several digital platforms are supported, including widely-used Google and Microsoft packages. You’ll find guidance to keep students safe; how to improve accessibility and support students with SEND; and learn about successful approaches from other schools.
- United Learning Trust share the story of their adoption of remote learning practices through YouTube, accessible through this DfE post.
- The Department for Education regularly updates its guidance on safeguarding issues relating to remote education during the pandemic, as well as the expectations for schools in providing education to students at home. The Department has also published some example remote lessons – while computing isn’t explicitly covered, many of the approaches to use of learning technologies are relevant.
There’s lots of subject-specific advice and resources for remote teaching of computing, too through the National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE):
- Oak National Academy has been busily building full curriculum provision for all subjects, including KS2, KS3 and KS4 computing in collaboration with the NCCE. Oak lessons are video-rich; are freely-available; and require no registration. The teacher hub for computing, with suggested units, can be accessed here.
- For A-level Computer Science teachers the Isaac Computer Science platform provides learning materials and videos, as well as self-assessments and online student master classes, to support the full curriculum.
- Our Home Teaching support is live, once more, on the Teach Computing website including resources and lesson plans covering key stages 1-5.
- CAS Support for home teaching is part of the CAS Inspire programme and includes live webinars, videos and useful resources, as well as support from a network of computing teachers via Community of Practice meetings and across social media, including weekly #CASChat sessions.
There’s plenty to read and hear on the subject of remote teaching of computing, such as
- This blog and pedagogy quick-read on ‘Planning and reflecting on remote learning’
- A special episode of the Teach Computing Podcast entitled ‘Moving Teaching Online: challenges and opportunities
- The Hello World issue ‘Learning under lockdown’ on remote learning includes this article signposting free resources linked to the computing curriculum.
To help schools develop a curriculum implementation plan, which may include remote teaching, our team of subject matter experts is ready and willing to work with schools upon request.
We’d love to hear about what works best for you, so please join the weekly #CASchat, find us on Facebook or get in touch directly. And keep doing what you’re doing, as we’re extremely grateful.
Senior Computing & Technology Specialist, STEM Learning
Join Us at the CAS Autumn Event This Week
We’re looking forward to the CAS Autumn Event which opens tomorrow, Tuesday 10 November, with a free programme of online events running until Thursday 19 November.
The CAS Autumn Event, hosted by Computing at School, has a particular focus on cybersecurity, with NCCE experts, including Simon Roberts and Ben Garside are among the line-up.
Simon Roberts is secondary subject specialist at the NCCE and will be taking part in a panel discussion on cyber security on Wednesday 18 November which also features Sophia McCall, Steven Furnell, DC Dawn Wood, Celine Williams, Emily Nicholass, and Ben Garside.
“It’s great to be talking at this year’s Autumn CAS Event,” he said.
“During the session I’ll be discussing how the NCCE can support teachers, through CPD and the Teach Computing Curriculum for KS4 cyber security, an important topic, now more than ever with our reliance upon the internet and other networks.”
Ben Garside, Learning Manager at Raspberry Pi Foundation and one of the team behind the NCCE’s Teach Computing curriculum, will also be taking part in the panel event.
“I’m really looking forward to sharing the resources that we have on cybersecurity as part of the Teach Computing curriculum. Our aim is that teachers feel supported and confident in delivering such a relevant and important topic for our young people to help them navigate the digital world that they live in,” said Ben.
“Cybercriminals are increasingly finding more sophisticated methods of infiltrating networks and stealing data. It is therefore important that we equip our young people with the knowledge and skills to be able to make informed choices, not only about how who has their data and how they keep it secure, but also making them aware of the career opportunities related to cybersecurity when they enter the workplace.”
The first cyber focus event, on Wednesday 11 November, is aimed at primary school teachers, and brings together a panel of speakers; DC Dawn Wood, Ian Rockey, Henry Platten, Megan Rose, Dr Jon Chippindall, Rosie Cole, Sway Grantham.
The Autumn Event also features four keynote speakers, opening with Anne-Marie Imafidon on Tuesday 10 November with her webinar, followed by Mark Martin on Thursday 12 November and Rupert Ward on Tuesday 17 November. Maggie Philbin will lead the closing event on Thursday 19 November.
THE FULL CAS AUTUMN PROGRAMME
Tuesday 10 November, 5pm – 5.45pm
Keynote – Anne Marie Imafidon: The Tech Landscape and Why Tech Needs Diversity
Wednesday 11 November, 4pm – 5.30pm
Primary Cyber Focus
Panellists: CEOP, Parent Zone, Barefoot, GoBubble, Cyber Choices, NCCE
Thursday 12 November, 4pm – 4.45pm
Keynote – Mark Martin: Connecting Students to the Tech Sector
Tuesday 17 November, 4pm – 4.45pm
Keynote – Rupert Ward: Learning Fitness – Learning How to Learn
Wednesday 18 November, 4pm – 5.30pm
Secondary Cyber Focus
Panellists: Professor of Cyber Security from University of Nottingham, Cyber Hunter from TV series Hunted, IBM, SafeToNet, NCCE
Thursday 19 November, 4pm – 4.45pm
Keynote – Maggie Philbin: Learning in a Real World Context
For more details on each of the sessions, see the CAS Autumn Event programme.
Support for Primary Senior Leaders
Inspire your pupils with Teach Computing
Teach Computing is here to help your staff grow in confidence and build the knowledge and skills to deliver high quality, inspiring computing education. We offer:
- free and low-cost CPD tailored for primary, including options to learn at home and at your own pace
- a comprehensive curriculum for key stages 1 and 2, including lesson plans, worksheets, homework and assessments
- consultancy and guidance on your computing provision, available freely to schools in Local Authority Districts 5 or 6.
Build subject knowledge with free and low-cost CPD
Support your computing lead and upskill other staff with courses to help you deliver the Computing curriculum with confidence.
Every state-funded primary school can access free online CPD. Plus, through our bursaries, one primary teacher each year can participate in CPD delivered remotely or face-to-face. Bursaries cover the course cost of £35 and a further £185 is awarded to the school. Further spaces cost only £35.
Teach a comprehensive computing curriculum
Enhance your provision while reducing teacher workloads with our Teach Computing Curriculum. It contains everything you need to teach computing, including lesson plans, slides, worksheets, homework and assessments.
The content has been created by expert teachers, based on the latest pedagogical research and teacher feedback.
Consultancy and guidance for schools
We offer fully-funded consultancy and guidance to primary schools located in Local Authority Districts 5 or 6 through a network of computing education specialists, called subject matter experts.
Your local expert can help you improve your computing offer, and identify the most appropriate CPD to upskill your staff
Exciting Enrichment Opportunity with the Denbigh School Computing Hub
The Denbigh School Computing Hub Milton Keynes is offering an exciting opportunity for local schools to boost their engagement in STEM activities with Lego First League.
The hub is offering 10 schools the opportunity to win free registration to the Lego First League Competition, alongside the hire of a full Lego Spike Prime Coding Kit for five months in their school.
FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge (ages 9-16) is a global STEM programme for teams of young people, to encourage an interest in real world themes and develop key skills that are crucial for their future careers. Young people work together to explore a given topic and to design, build and program an autonomous LEGO® robot to solve a series of missions.
The Denbigh School Hub wants to increase engagement in STEM through such challenges, so are offering the opportunity to fully fund this initiate for 10 Primary or Secondary schools from Milton Keynes or Northamptonshire. Each school will receive hire of the full kit from January 2021 – May 2021, allowing them to enter a group of up to 10 young people. This could be done within lessons or part as an extra-curricular activity in school, with the group working together on the programme for up to three months, finishing with entering and attending a reginal competition in the Spring to showcase their creations.
More information about the competition and what it entails can be found here: https://education.theiet.org/first-lego-league-programmes/about/fll/
To be entered into the raffle to win the hiring of the kits and the registration fee, all Milton Keynes and Northamptonshire school’s who have engaged with the Hub, attending courses since September 2019 can apply.
If a member of staff from school has not attended any courses, details of sessions that are currently running can be found and booked here: http://computing.thedenbighalliance.org.uk/#Courses
The hub is running online courses for both Primary and Secondary teachers with the following costs:
Teachers from state-funded schools or colleges
Face-to-face or remote course
GCSE (Computer Science Accelerator)
Secondary KS3 and KS4