“We need pedagogy free from fear and focused on the magic of children's innate quest for information and understanding” Sugata Mitra
Preparing for Safer Internet Day gave me pause for reflection; it is just over a year since the launch of the new computing curriculum in England and so much has changed.
In fact much of the new content was present in the old ICT curriculum, but the emphasis on computational thinking, algorithms and programming has changed and is more emphatic. It is interesting that online safety was never explicit in ICT, but it is in computing. However, when running PDE courses, the most striking aspect of the focus of interest was the teachers’ panic over learning to programme, caused, I suspect by the use of some quite challenging language in the programme of study. Phrases such as; “design, use and evaluate computational abstractions that model the state and behaviour of real-world problems and physical systems”, proved to be a real feature. By contrast teachers felt confident about online safety to the extent that some were quite blasé and felt “it just happens”!