How To Improve Teaching Computing

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Can a shared approach to computing help schools support each other?

The reality is that few of us do much in our lives anymore without using technology to facilitate it – whether we are creating and sharing documents for work, navigating our way somewhere or buying tickets for a concert – it’s all done with technology.

Why? Because it makes it easier, more efficient and more enjoyable. However, when it comes to placing technology in the hands of students, there are some teachers who find it difficult to integrate this access to the world, efficiency of effort and all round joy into their classroom. The question being shouted from the mountain top, therefore, is “Why is computing not at the forefront of all teachers’ planning?”

The most common reasons for some teachers not being able to maximise technology’s potential are simple and very familiar:

  1. Skills and confidence: most teachers require structured, year-round, personalised support – or schools face significant gaps in technology-led learning opportunities.
  2. An achievable computing plan: a realistic plan that is flexible to teachers’ needs and accounts for available hardware.
  3. School budgets: schools can’t afford the necessary training.

What’s the solution?

A selection of London schools recently took part in a pilot where they used an online teacher training and planning service for computing – the pilot was supported by the City Learning Centre in Wandsworth (WCLC). With ever-tightening school budgets, WCLC wanted to see if it was possible to make a greater impact on schools’ computing training with this online tool. 

Cocoon interface

The personalised planning tool chosen by WCLC and used in the case study, Cocoon, turned out to be ideal for this experiment! Cocoon created a plan for each school, with personalised dashboards for all teachers. The step-by-step lessons, each with their own demo video and in-class presentation, meant that more reluctant teachers were immediately able to deliver outstanding computing lessons; they simply had to stay one lesson ahead of the students.

The computing coordinators and more confident teachers also used the lesson plans but were able to use the Webinars, Certified Teacher Training and Roadmap to work on the whole school’s journey as well.

Cocoon Teacher Training

Cocoon was a clear success at the individual school level. However, we must now see if this can be further added to using a shared approach between schools. Working together means that individual schools’ coordinators can discuss exact resources and precise milestones with coordinators in other schools.

It also means that training for groups of coordinators can be more focussed and streamlined because all the teachers in the respective schools have access to the same resources – meaning the schools can set milestones that they can work toward as a collective and support each other along the way. Cocoon’s Responsive Resource Library is especially helpful here – it means that the schools can meet to discuss needs and requirements and then request these through Cocoon (Cocoon makes resources in response to its audience’s requests).

Case study success

So, what is the answer to the question: Can a shared approach to computing help schools support each other?

A resounding ‘yes’! All participating teachers stated that it improved their confidence for teaching with technology. Check out feedback from individual teachers in the video below. 

Discount for Teacher Toolkit Readers

Get your Free Trial of Cocoon now at or visit this special link before 7th December to get a 20% discount on Cocoon for your schoolIf you represent a group of schools or are a training provider you can get directly in touch to discuss group options at care@cocooncomputing.co.uk.

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This is a sponsored blogpost.

Holly Gardner

Holly Gardner is TT Editor, as well as a Freelance Book Publisher and TEFL teacher. She has been working with @TeacherToolkit for 5 years - since she published his first book in her role as Senior Commissioning Editor at Bloomsbury Publishing. Since then, she left her day job, moved to Madrid and trained as an English teacher. She is now a key member of the TT team, continues to teach english and edit books, and also spends her time learning spanish and searching for the best tortilla de patata! You can follow her at @HollyEditTeach.