The lessons will usually link to a specific piece of software (sometimes within the own companies’ resources).
Progression can be clearly evidenced.
There will be possible tutorial support from the scheme of work.
The scheme may be used in other schools so you could ask their opinion on it's value and impact.
Teachers might feel restricted by having to focus on a particular strand.
Although there may be suggestions, lessons won’t link directly to year group’s curriculum topics.
Some schemes present the input and the activity so that the child can work through both independently. Although this can be good for some, others may struggle and the teacher may feel deskilled having not planned the lesson.
It won’t take advantage of devices that might be available such as tablets or robots.
There will be a whole school cost for the scheme and it could be quite expensive.
There is opportunity to work on creative projects over longer periods of time.
There's more freedom to use computing skills to support or enrich another lesson and link to year group’s topics. The curriculum could also be adapted to any changes that occur.
Lessons can utilise the technology that’s available in the school. e.g. Robots or tablets.
Teachers can customise the curriculum to children’s needs and abilities.
Teachers will be increasing their subject knowledge and skills in computing as they are in charge of planning and delivering the content.
Teachers might not feel comfortable planning / finding resources and may lack subject knowledge if not given sufficient training.
More training will be required in using a wider range of hardware, software programs and apps.
There maybe a cost but this may only be for a consultant to help build the curriculum overview and deliver training.
Here is an example of what a bespoke computing curriculum could look like utilising the 4 Areas of Study. A more detailed map that I could support you in creating would include links to wider curriculum or core subject topics and a list of resources for each half term.
The 5 Stage Process
Stage 1: Initial discussion We will start with an initial chat. This could be in person at my school, over a Zoom call or a phone call. I will ask you questions about your current curriculum set up and why you want to move to a bespoke curriculum. I will explain and demonstrate how I can work with you to create one.
Stage 2: Whole School Overview Either in your school, mine or over Zoom we will work together to create a whole school overview of computing topics across the 4 Areas of Study that link specifically with humanities, science, English books or any other special events that are taught through the year.
Stage 3: Year group Overviews Once we have the overview mapped out, you will need to create Year group overviews with the information taken from the whole school map and the 4 Area of Study documents that I will provide you with. These will contain lists of skills, vocabulary, resources and lesson ideas that you can copy into the Year group overviews.
Stage 4: Training When you are ready, we will book some dates for INSET training where we can launch the new bespoke curriculum to your staff, answer any questions and begin training them in using the new resources and teaching them some of the lessons suggested in the Year group overviews.
Stage 5: Planning and Teaching Once trained up on how to use the software and apps I have recommended and armed with the Year group overviews, your teachers will be able to plan their new lessons, adapt them to their classes and teach them to the children. They can use my website or contact me for further support if needed.