Digital skills such as programming, web design, and digital content creation are no longer a niche pursuit. The UK will need 750,000 skilled digital workers by 2017, and almost every business imaginable will utilise digital technology to find its market, sell its services, and become as efficient as possible. However, Digital Learning at Abbotsholme isn’t just about teaching students how to do things with computers, but also the why (and sometimes just as importantly, the why not).
Using a combination of different digital technologies (including 1:1 iPads, Windows-based PCs, and other specialised systems like Virtual Reality and Rasberry Pi) pupils are taught computer skills and digital literacy not only to succeed in this subject, but to support and compliment their learning across the entire school curriculum.
Key Stage 3
In the Senior School all students are given access to their own iPad which they will use across the school curriculum. Digital Learning is taught as much as a life skill as it is a technical subject. Students learn how to use various software packages (including the Microsoft Office suite and essential Apple apps), experience different coding languages (including Swift, HTML, and Python) and digital presentations skills. Students also discover the history behind the creation of technologies such as the Internet, and examine some of the big digital questions facing society right now, including issues of online privacy, plagiarism, and artificial intelligence.
Key Stage 4
In Year 10/11 students have the option to study for the Cambridge Nationals Creative iMedia qualification. This is a practical subject that combines creative and technical skills, requiring students to produce a series of digital media products (including film trailers, websites and videogame designs) for potential clients. Students will also learn how to manage a project from initial brief to completion, working both independently and collaboratively.
Using digital technologies in a safe and responsible way is at the heart of everything we do in Digital Learning at Abbotsholme. We believe that the opportunities provided by such technology are so important that we cannot shield children from them, but nor can we ignore the risks (however small) that they entail. Pupils’ online behaviour is as important as their offline behaviour, and they receive support and advice in this area not just from their tutors and teachers, but also from their peers as part of our ‘Digital Leaders’ programme.