Computing Assessment Tasks - an invaluable addition to our computing toolkit

Thanks to Dawn Hallybone for the following article.
 
We are all now familiar with the Computing curriculum – terms that were not part of our vocabulary a couple of years ago are now commonplace: coding, digital literacy and online safety are now all an integral part of the computing curriculum and vocabulary across the curriculum.

Assessment, however, has taken longer to embed for many. Rising Stars has produced a range of tasks to help teachers with computing assessment for Years 1 - 6. These tasks are designed to give teachers the means of formatively assessing children’s programming and computing skills, as well as understanding of concepts and thinking skills.
 
Each year group is broken down into the following key topics: problem solving, programming, logical thinking, searching, creating content and digital literacy. The resource covers the whole of the curriculum and can be used with any scheme of work; it also links to the Rising Stars Progression Framework for Computing. A free mapping chart is provided to show how to use the tasks alongside Switched on Computing, should schools wish to do so. 
 
Each topic includes three tasks, the first being diagnostic. The diagnostic task looks at prior learning before the teaching begins; the questions are more open-ended to enable teachers to plan the content that they will need to teach specific to the children in their class. To go alongside the questions are a series of helpful visual prompts. The written tasks can be used to help support pupils as they work through a unit of teaching or to support whole class teaching.  The practical task is designed to be used flexibly within the class, so could be used as a basis for a computing lesson or to be extended as part of a larger project.

          


 

For me, the beauty of these tasks is that they provide teachers with simple tools to monitor children against the national curriculum and enable them to track if the pupils are working towards, meeting or exceeding expectations. They help teachers to plan effectively and ensure progress for all children. They also support the computing co-ordinator in covering the entirety of the curriculum. All the photocopiable tasks are also provided as PowerPoint slides for flexible use within the class.
 
We have found that these tasks help teachers to gauge where children are in their learning.  For us, they will be an invaluable addition to our computing toolkit and will help to develop and extend our computing teaching.

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