Tuesday, 26 February 2013

How 'big data' is changing lives

Data is increasingly defining us - from the information we share on the web, to that collected by the numerous companies with whom we interact. Intrigued by the sheer scales involved, photojournalist Rick Smolan wanted to see how data was transforming the world.

Here, as part of the BBC News - What If? season, take a look at his global snapshots - compiled in his book The Human Face of Big Data.

Monday, 25 February 2013


The ETC Alliance are hosting our first #learning1st twitter chat tomorrow evening between 5pm and 6pm join us if you can.

Friday, 8 February 2013

ICT The National Curriculum in England Framework document for consultation


Purpose of study

A high-quality computing education equips pupils to understand and change the world through computational thinking. It develops and requires logical thinking and precision. It combines creativity with rigour: pupils apply underlying principles to understand realworld systems, and to create purposeful and usable artefacts. More broadly, it provides a lens through which to understand both natural and artificial systems, and has substantial links with the teaching of mathematics, science, and design and technology. 

At the core of computing is the science and engineering discipline of computer science, in which pupils are taught how digital systems work, how they are designed and programmed, and the fundamental principles of information and computation. Building on this core, computing equips pupils to apply information technology to create products and solutions. A computing education also ensures that pupils become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves through, information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.  

The National Curriculum for computing aims to ensure that all pupils:

 can understand and apply the fundamental principles of computer science, including logic, algorithms, data representation, and communication

 can analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems

 can evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems

 are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology.

Attainment targets 
By the end of each key stage, pupils are expected to know, apply and understand the matters, skills and processes specified in the relevant programme of study.

Subject content

Key Stage 1
Pupils should be taught to:
 understand what algorithms are, how they are implemented as programs on digital devices, and that programs execute by following a sequence of instructions

 write and test simple programs

 use logical reasoning to predict the behaviour of simple programs

 organise, store, manipulate and retrieve data in a range of digital formats

 communicate safely and respectfully online, keeping personal information private, and recognise common uses of information technology beyond school.

Key Stage 2
Pupils should be taught to:
 design and write programs that accomplish specific goals, including controlling or simulating physical systems; solve problems by decomposing them into smaller parts

 use sequence, selection, and repetition in programs; work with variables and 
various forms of input and output; generate appropriate inputs and predicted outputs to test programs

 use logical reasoning to explain how a simple algorithm works and to detect and correct errors in algorithms and programs

 understand computer networks including the internet; how they can provide multiple services, such as the world-wide web; and the opportunities they offer for communication and collaboration

 describe how internet search engines find and store data; use search engines effectively; be discerning in evaluating digital content; respect individuals and intellectual property; use technology responsibly, securely and safely

 select, use and combine a variety of software (including internet services) on a range of digital devices to accomplish given goals, including collecting, analysing, evaluating and presenting data and information.

Key Stage 3
Pupils should be taught to:
 design, use and evaluate computational abstractions that model the state and behaviour of real-world problems and physical systems

 understand at least two key algorithms for each of sorting and searching; use logical reasoning to evaluate the performance trade-offs of using alternative algorithms to solve the same problem

 use two or more programming languages, one of which is textual, each used to solve a variety of computational problems; use data structures such as tables or arrays; use procedures to write modular programs; for each procedure, be able to explain how it works and how to test it

 understand simple Boolean logic (such as AND, OR and NOT) and its use in determining which parts of a program are executed; use Boolean logic and wildcards in search or database queries; appreciate how search engine results are selected and ranked 

 understand the hardware and software components that make up networked computer systems, how they interact, and how they affect cost and performance; explain how networks such as the internet work; understand how computers can monitor and control physical systems

 explain how instructions are stored and executed within a computer system

 explain how data of various types can be represented and manipulated in the form of binary digits including numbers, text, sounds and pictures, and be able to carry out some such manipulations by hand

 undertake creative projects that involve selecting, using, and combining multiple applications, preferably across a range of devices, to achieve challenging goals, including collecting and analysing data and meeting the needs of known users

 create, reuse, revise and repurpose digital information and content with attention to design, intellectual property and audience.

Key Stage 4
All pupils must have the opportunity to study aspects of information technology and computer science at sufficient depth to allow them to progress to higher levels of study or to a professional career.

All pupils should be taught to:
 develop their capability, creativity and knowledge in computer science, digital media and information technology 

 develop and apply their analytic, problem-solving, design, and computational thinking skills.

Monday, 4 February 2013

Safer Internet Day: Louise Minchin Q&A

Safer Internet Day: Louise Minchin Q&A

Louise Minchin's Guide to Online Parental Tools

Related Stories

Q: How has the internet influenced your job as a journalist?
A: The internet has really changed my job, making it much easier to get instant access to information. When I first started we didn't have access to the World Wide Web, and had to rely on newspaper cuttings, newswires like Reuters and libraries to get information, which was very time consuming.
Q: How would you class the internet as a 'tool' in your work?


  • BBC Breakfast presenter Louise Minchin is helping to promote the 'Share Take Care' campaign, a BBC initiative to mark Safer Internet Day on 5 February
  • Students from Wildern School in Hampshire were able to put their questions to Louise as part ofBBC News School Report's coverage of Safer Internet Day
A: I think the internet is an incredibly useful research tool, especially on breaking news stories. It means I can get access to reliable information very quickly.
Q: Why do you think that internet safety is an important issue?
A: I think it is important especially for children, as if you don't take care you can come into contact with people who may pretend to be your friend but mean you harm. Also, if you can easily share too much information about yourself, that is then available for billions of people to use.
I also have safety concerns because if you aren't careful you can get access to things that can frighten and harm you without meaning to.
Q: What internet safety risks do you know about?
A: My biggest concern as a journalist about internet safety is the integrity of the information that I am using. I take care to use trusted websites like the BBC News website, and sources that I know.
Q: How safe is your internet at home?
A: On a personal level I do know about internet safety risks and take care. Because of my job there is a lot of personal information about me on the internet, and I try not to add anything that I want to keep private. I tweet but only about work and our dog, and never about my family.
Adam, Lauren, Natasha and   Daniel from Wildern SchoolThe Wildern School reporting team of Adam, Lauren, Natasha and Daniel
I am not on Facebook either because I don't want people to know who my friends are.
Q: Do you use parental controls to make the internet safer for your children?
A: I think that the internet is fairly safe at home, and we use parental controls on our computers and on the TV. I have also set the parental controls on my daughter's phone so she can't get access to the internet without a password which she doesn't have.
The most effective parental control we have, is having the computer in the kitchen, so we can always see what they are looking at. We also talk to them about how they use the internet and what is safe to do.
Q: Do you believe it is a parent's responsibility to check their child's texts, Facebook account and internet access and if so how? Do you know what your children look at online?

"Start Quote

I don't think the internet can be effectively censored so it is up to us to take responsibility"
A: I think it is important parents know what their children are doing online and on their phones. Although I feel awkward about checking texts, I do check my daughter's personal messages on her Blackberry and she knows that. She is not on Facebook but I hope she will let me keep an eye on what she is up to, when she is.
I think that trust is very important and the best thing is you talk to your child about why you are checking their online activity, and discuss things as they happen.
I do know what my children look at online, and often if they need to look things up for school I will help them do it, to make sure they are looking at safe sites.
Q: Do you believe in internet censorship?
A: I think that you can and should censor your own internet by using parental controls at home and on other devices. I also think that if you teach children how to use the internet safely then, when they grow up they can self-censor, and choose to see what they want to see. I don't think the internet can be effectively censored so it is up to us to take responsibility.
Q: Do you think Safer Internet Day is a good idea and why?
A: I think Safer Internet Day is a great idea, to make us think about how we use the internet and to use it more safely.
Q: What are your tips about staying safe online?
A: To stay safe online, my top tip would be to ask yourself before you post anything whether it is your phone number, a photo, or a even an opinion, if you would be happy to share it with a stadium full of complete strangers.

Safer Internet Day/Week 2013

'Safer Internet Day', which is hosted by Insafe and co-founded by the European Commission is on Tuesday 5th February this year. The ICT department is having a 'Safer Internet Day' week, where each ICT class will have one ICT lesson dedicated to it. This year the theme is 'Rights and Responsibilities' with the slogan 'Connect with Respect'.  You can have a look at our lesson plan here if you wish here
Some of our school reporters have written some questions for Louise Mitchin, the BBC Breakfast news presenter. This will be live on the BBC website on Tuesday and we shall add a link to the blog page above.
To show our support we are on the UK Safer Internet Centre supporters page here

Some of our year 9 pupils have also entered a radio broadcast competition; the winners will be announced on the UK 'Safer Internet Day' live radio broadcast show at 8:00pm. The show is broadcasted from 9:00am to 9:00pm and if you want to listen to it here is the link:. This will also be broadcasted in the piazza at lunchtime on Tuesday. 

Please show your support by mentioning 'Safer Internet Day' to your tutor group, if you want to see what is going on in lessons have a look on twitter  #WILDERNSID2013.

ICT Department