Why We Teach Programming at Felsted
Felsted programming with BBC Micro-Bit


Why we teach Computer Programming at Felsted.
Through programming, students can create new tools and experiences, solve complex problems, and express ideas. This broad application of the skill, alongside the increasing pervasiveness of computing in all areas of our lives, makes programming an important and relevant skill for all students.

The programming and algorithm strands are a crucial part of the computing curriculum. It is important that all pupils experience and understand the fundamental skills involved. Therefore, it is our intention to demonstrate students’ progression in this area of the curriculum. In exploring the concepts within this area, we believe that a broad understanding of the progression that students make at Felsted will provide all educators with a valuable insight into what their pupils already understand as well as what lies ahead.

Computer programmers are often curious people - a curiosity about how things work behind the scenes often sparks them to a career in programming. Have you ever wondered how it's possible for us to watch movies on our phones, how online apps work, or how Google can fetch the answers to our biggest questions? If so, computer programming is the answer. In addition to creating useful websites and apps, learning computer programming also offers a lot of benefits to the coder; honing their logic and reasoning, perseverance, and communication skills. Even though we are all dependent on technology in our daily lives, very few people know how to read and write code.


Felsted programming


Computer Programming in the 'Real World'
Computer programming is a desirable skill because so much of our world is automated online. As a computer programmer, students write and test code to create websites and mobile phone apps. The goal is to innovate and continuously improve upon existing processes.

Coding skills can improve how  we do business. This is valuable to potential employers. For instance, an e-commerce business owner not only needs a website, but they need someone to collect data about how users interact with a page and modify page elements accordingly, leading to increased sales down the road.

Even in a non-coding role, knowing how to write code can be of use. For instance, a student may obtain a degree in biology and work with a research lab. Knowing how to code could allow them to participate in application and software development for their company as well as other private and government agencies. Likewise, a psychologist who knows how to code may be able to create a mobile app to help people monitor their depression and anxiety symptoms.

Computer Programming to express creativity
Learning to code not only allows students to give machines instructions, but it also teaches them abstract thinking and problem-solving. In fact, problem-solving skills and creativity are key to becoming a successful computer programmer. Although coding may appear mathematical, rigid, and even boring to some, it’s anything but! Learning and applying coding allows students to use their creativity to come up with innovative solutions to real-world problems.

To expand, when programmers are tasked with a problem, it’s up to them to come up with a solution. They start with a blank screen. With the big picture in mind, they use both creative problem-solving and logical thinking. Every time they face a new challenge, they get to solve yet another problem.

Over the course of the Spring and Summer terms, the students have had different opportunities to test and examine different Computer languages in the following topics:

Year Group Programming Units
4 Repetition in Shapes and Games
5 Block Coding
  Selection in Quizzes
6 Advanced Block Coding
  Variables in Games
  Programming: Sensing
7 Programming: BBC Micro:bit
8 Mobile App Development
  Edublocks: Python Programming
9 Python Programming