Digital Technologies

Our society is immersed with digital devices and technologies – it’s an integral part of our work and personal lives.

The students of Berwick Chase are the children of this digital age and deserve to be equipped with the knowledge and skills that will not only help prepare them for the future, but allow them to develop the confidence to engage with this technology successfully and safely, now and in the future.

Our Digital Technologies program at Berwick Chase is based on the Victorian Curriculum, with every grade being repeatedly immersed in the learning and skills required to meet the achievement standards at each level over the course of their learning journey at our school. Students are actively engaged in the processes of analysing problems and opportunities, designing, developing and evaluating digital solutions, and creating and sharing information that meets a range of current and future needs.

In 2021, our Preps, Year 1 and Year 2 students will be welcomed into the Digi Tech Classroom during the first semester, with the following focus:

Prep:

  • Exploring Technology and linking pieces to their purpose. Examining terms like: hardware and software, input and output, cause and effect.
  • Looking at how to sort items into categories by identifying similarities and differences.
  • Introduction to key terms (i.e. left and right).
  • Giving and receiving instructions.
  • Exploration of sequencing and algorithms with and without technology.

Year 1:

  • Identifying different types of technology and their purpose. Examining terms like: hardware and software, input and output, cause and effect.
  • Sharing ideas and/or work with their classmates and teacher on a safe online platform (e.g. Showbie).
  • Exploring how to record and display simple data sets.
  • Identifying similarities and differences between themselves and others.
  • Representing and following a sequence of steps, using directional symbols.
  • Building on their understanding of algorithms by developing their own to solve problems with and without technology.

Year 2

  • Identifying the features of different types of technology and what they like/don’t like about them. Using adjectives and rhyme to describe.
  • Perform a group rap/song for the grade, utilising actions and props to enhance their performance.
  • Understanding the purpose of a ‘key’ and the creation of their own to develop sequences and algorithms for others to follow.
  • Using tools to develop algorithms to solve more complex problems with and without technology.

In 2021, our Year 3, Year 4, Year 5 and Year 6 students will be welcomed into the Digi Tech Classroom during second semester, with the following focus:

Year 3

  • Developing their confidence in signing-in and out of Google Drive, exploring its functionality by creating folders and documents and sharing them with the teacher.
  • Creating their own survey questions with possible responses, surveying classmates and recording data.
  • Exploring digital programs by inputting collected data and creating digital graphs.
  • Exploring how we can utilise digital survey tools by creating their own Kahoot!
  • Improving their understanding of block code through their exploration of Dash n Dot robots and programs like Scratch Jnr.

Year 4

  • Developing their confidence in signing-in and out of Google Drive, exploring its functionality by creating folders and documents and sharing them with the teacher.
  • Consolidate their understanding of peripheral devices and how they can be classified as either ‘input’ or ‘output’.
  • Learn about data-bases and digital systems, exploring how they can be used to assist us in everyday life.
  • Explore iMovie, using the features to create various videos that share their learning.
  • Create a stop-motion video using their previous learning of iMovie.
  • Use the WeDo 2.0 Lego Kits to build and code machines.

Year 5

  • Consolidate their confidence in signing-in and out of Google Drive, exploring its functionality by creating folders and documents and sharing them with the teacher.
  • Learn the importance of how we safely share information in an online forum by joining a class blog and creating posts that include text, media and video.
  • Learn about binary code and how the base 2 system compares to our base 10 system.
  • Extend their understanding of block coding by competing in team challenges using Sphero robots.
  • Extend their understanding of digital systems and how they work.

Year 6

  • Consolidate their confidence in signing-in and out of Google Drive, exploring its functionality by creating folders and documents and sharing them with the teacher.
  • Learn the importance of how we safely share information in an online forum by joining a class blog and creating posts that include text, media and video.
  • Will recognise the importance technology plays in the sustainability of our planet, building a project that highlights their learning.
  • Extend their understanding of coding through their use of Scratch, designing and programing their own game using their prior learning.

In addition to these skills, students will develop their ability to:

  • Work cooperatively as part of a pair/triad/group.
  • Handle technology in a safe and respectful manner.
  • Engage in and learn about how to interact safely online as part of our eSmart Schools Program over the course of the semester.

We invite you to join us in our learning by exploring our blogs:

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KEY CONCEPTS COVERED IN DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES

Underpinning the learning in Digital Technologies is a set of key concepts (outlined below) that establish a way of thinking about problems, opportunities and information systems and provide a framework for knowledge and practice.

The key concepts of abstraction, data collection, representation and interpretation, specification, algorithms and development correspond to the key elements of computational thinking. Collectively these concepts span the key ideas about the organisation, representation and automation of digital solutions and information. They can be explored in non-digital or digital contexts and are likely to underpin future digital systems and provide a language and perspective that students and teachers can use when discussing Digital Technologies.

Key conceptsDescription
AbstractionAbstraction involves hiding details of an idea, problem or solution that are not relevant, to focus on a manageable number of aspects. Abstraction is a natural part of communication: people rarely communicate every detail, because many details are not relevant in a given context. The idea of abstraction can be acquired from an early age. For example, when students are asked how to make toast for breakfast, they do not mention all steps explicitly, assuming that the listener is an intelligent implementer of the abstract instructions. Central to managing the complexity of information systems is the ability to ‘temporarily ignore’ the internal details of the subcomponents of larger specifications, algorithms, systems or interactions. In digital systems, everything must be broken down into simple instructions.
Data collection, representation and interpretationThe data concepts focus on the properties of data, how they are collected and represented, and how they are interpreted in context to produce information. Data collection describes the numerical, categorical and textual facts measured, collected or calculated as the basis for creating information and its binary representation in digital systems.Data representation describes how data are represented and structured symbolically for storage and communication, by people and in digital systems.Data interpretation describes the processes of extracting meaning from data. These concepts in Digital Technologies build on a corresponding Statistics and Probability strand in the Mathematics curriculum. The Digital Technologies curriculum provides opportunities to acquire deep knowledge of the nature of data and their representation, and computational skills for interpreting data. The data concepts provide rich opportunities for authentic data exploration in other learning areas while developing data processing and visualisation skills.
Specification, algorithms and developmentThe concepts of specification, algorithms and development focus on the precise definition and communication of problems and their solutions. This begins with the description of tasks and concludes in the accurate definition of computational problems and their algorithmic solutions. These concepts draw from logic, algebra and the language of mathematics, and can be related to the scientific method of recording experiments in science: Specification describes the process of defining and communicating a problem precisely and clearly. For example, explaining the need to direct a robot to move in a particular way.An algorithm is a precise description of the steps and decisions needed to solve a problem. Algorithms will need to be tested before the final solution can be implemented. Anyone who has followed or given instructions, or navigated using directions, has used an algorithm. Algorithmic thinking skills can be developed without programming. For example, students can follow the steps within a recipe or describe directions to locate items.Development describes the automation of an algorithm, typically by using appropriate software or writing a computer program.
Digital systemsThe digital systems concept focuses on the components of digital systems: Hardware and software (computer architecture and the operating system)Networks and the internet (wireless, mobile and wired networks and protocols). The broader definition of an information system that includes data, people, processes and digital systems falls under the interactions and impacts concept.
Interactions and impactsThe interactions and impacts concept focuses on all aspects of human interaction with and through information systems, and the enormous potential for positive and negative economic, environmental and social impacts enabled by these systems: Interactions refer to all human interactions with information systems, especially user interfaces and experiences, and human-human interactions including communication and collaboration facilitated by digital systems. This concept also addresses methods for protecting stored and communicated data and information.Impacts describe analysing and predicting the extent to which personal, economic, environmental and social needs are met through existing and emerging digital systems and devices; and appreciating the transformative potential of digital systems in people’s lives. It also involves consideration of the relationship between information systems and society and in particular the ethical and legal obligations of individuals and organisations regarding ownership and privacy of data and information.