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Simon Peyton Jones's bookmarks

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Last edit: 18 March 2022

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Computing at school in the UK

Computing is a foundational subject discipline that every child should have the opportunity to learn, from primary school onwards, just like maths or natural science. That is the vision of the new English National Curriculum for computing. This page collects together key links and resources to explain the vision, put it in its international context, point to major reports, identify key resources, and so on.

Many of these links are to CAS resources. Every CAS resource is a wiki that you can edit and improve. If you are a CAS member, please take the initiative to write as well as read, to contribute and share as well as enjoy and celebrate.

Simon PJ

The big picture

  • Our vision for teaching computing. This seven-minute video (Sept 2019) summarises the vision of the new computing curriculum, and the support for teachers and schools offered by the National Centre for Computing Education. It's addressed primarily to schools and teachers, but gives a useful overview.
  • Why we should teach children to code, page 62 of Hello World Issue 10, 2019. In his March 2019 blog post, Andreas Schleicher, Director of Education at the OECD, asks “Should schools teach coding?”. This short article makes the case for teaching every child to write simple programs, but also explains why we should not uncritically think that skill in coding is The Answer.
  • Shut down or restart (January 2012): this report by the Royal Society report was a watershed. The NextGen Skills report, a year earlier, was a key forerunner. Here's a page with lots more national reports.
  • After the reboot (November 2017) is the Royal Society's assessment of the state of play five years after "Shut down or restart", and three years after the new national curriculum was launched.
  • The international perspective: national reports and rich curricular resources from other countries.
  • Teaching creative computer science: this 12-minute TEDx talk gives the thinking behind the new computing curriculum. My talk Shaping our children's eduction in computing, at Strange Loop 2018, is a more up to date and longer (1 hr) version.
  • Code to joy, which appeared in the TES on 16 Jan 2015, is a 2,500 overview of the opportunities and challenges of the new computing curriculum.
  • Media coverage and blogs
  • Research in computer science education
  • Digital skills in computing education. I gave this talk as part of the 2020 BCS Virtual Festival of Digital skills. In it I try to articulate a vision of what "digital skills" might be, and how we should help our children to acquire them.

The National Curriculum

The CAS community

Resources to support computing teachers

Assessment

Teacher training

Careers and diversity

Other amazing organisations that support computing at school

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