Over the past few weeks I have been researching the new Computing curriculum and its implications for our schools in the UK.
More and more schools are asking about how to implement computing and programming in the ICT lessons. While many new organisations are popping up, after talking to many of them, it’s quite clear that we are just feeling our way and testing new ideas. It is also clear that teachers are worried, training is needed and investment is key. As well as the palpable anxiety, the excitement at what can be achieved is rising.
At Jewish Interactive UK, after a much discussion with headteachers, class teachers, programmers, ICT specialists and more, we have concluded that a holistic approach is essential. We are designing a complete Computing package that will be approach computing from the beginning; providing children and teachers with the skills to build their own computers, and then start programming – resulting in children attaining the skills to create their own Jewish apps!
We run a biannual global competition where students are asked to create a digital piece of work. The winning entry for our past competition was a model of the Beit Hamikdash created in Minecraft. This was achieved through painstaking programming and took its 11 year old creators three months to create.
Before the boys started to build the Beit HaMikdash, they had to learn about the Temple in minute detail and included parts of the Temple’s contents e.g. incense boxes, garments and vessels, in their model.
Let’s stop for a minute and imagine the learning that took place while they were working on their model: research, design, planning, collaboration, mathematics, Literacy, music, Hebrew text study and more. This one project represents true blended integrated learning and a glimpse at the education of the future.