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View from the classroom

Campsbourne School, Hornsey J

une Isik is an

independent ICT and computing consultant with over 20 years’ experience who currently works with a variety of primary schools across London. Preparation for the new

Computing Curriculum has been the focus for many of the schools she supports, and Espresso Coding is one of the new services she has been trialling with these schools. June has been leading on ICT at Campsbourne School for almost 3 years now, so Campsbourne was the first of her schools to trial the use of Espresso Coding. This is how the trial has gone so far.

Tell us a little about your school Campsbourne School is located in Hornsey, north London. It is a two-form entry school with 415 pupils ranging from nursery to 11 years of age. The school is split into three phases – the lower phase consists of nursery, reception and Year 1 classes, the middle phase comprises of Years 2 and 3 and the third phase comprises of Years 4 to 6. The school has a variety of classrooms,

resources spaces, group spaces, hall spaces, library and an Information and Communications and Technology suite. In addition to the breakfast club the school runs a variety of after school club activities.

Why is coding important?

With the changes to the ICT Curriculum (which will be known as the Computing Curriculum from Sept 2014) there is a much greater emphasis on coding and programming. The Computing Curriculum aims to teach pupils how computers and computer systems work and this will help them design and create programs like apps and games based on their own ideas. It also supports children in understanding computational thinking and is part of the wider area of ‘Computer Science’.

When and how did you introduce coding to your school?

I introduced Espresso Coding to our Year 5 classes in November 2013. This enabled me to evaluate as a teacher how it would work as well as see how the children reacted to it. More recently, the other year groups have started using it too, from Year 1 onwards.


How did the teachers feel about coding? Many of the teachers were worried about teaching coding because they feel they don’t have the skills or subject knowledge needed to teach it properly. Also, with the new curriculum, there is a lot of new language – for example the word ‘algorithm’ can be quite frightening to teachers who don’t understand that it is merely a series of instructions. But many teachers are also excited as they feel the old ICT curriculum needed to be updated.

Why did you select Espresso Coding for the school?

Because, looking at the sample lessons on their website, it looked like something that was clearly structured - there are excellent video examples for each step which is extremely helpful (to teachers and children alike!).

Also, the free period of access until the end of October 2014 means we can trial it as a school for almost a year before deciding whether it is something we want to purchase.

Tell us about Espresso Coding and how it works Each year group has 2 Units of work. Each Unit is made up of 6 lessons, and each lesson has 5-6

May 2014

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