mercredi 22 novembre 2017

Children need courses in computing and finance | Letters

Bob Epton and Greg Conway think back to computing and ICT courses in the 1970s, Declan Wilkes offers financial education for young people, and Clint Wilson says children need protection in the digital economy

How sad to read how far behind we are in teaching children computing skills (We’re sending analogue children into a digital future, 20 November). In the late 1970s I was one of the first computer studies teachers. Our secondary school started with one microcomputer and 90 pupils taking computer studies as an option subject. The computer was booked solidly from early morning to night-time so pupils could access the exciting new technology for their coursework, which was 100% programming. Pupils of all abilities were totally engaged with the practical side of the course and derived huge satisfaction from even the simplest of programs. It was also unique in providing an outlet for the brightest pupils to stretch themselves, with future Oxbridge students working at projects way beyond the understanding of their teachers.

Then, as the years passed by, came the educational “experts” who decided that learning IT skills (how to use PowerPoint, Word, Excel etc) was the way forward and computer studies courses became a thing of the past. Without a doubt, had computing courses expanded in line with the development of the technology, Britain could have been leading the world, not sitting marvelling at what children in other countries can produce.
Bob Epton
Brigg, Lincolnshire

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from Children | The Guardian

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