Information Technology (IT) education is an integral part of the education process for all students attending ISA. Throughout the school (K-12), IT is taught as both discrete lessons/courses as well as being integrated into other curriculum areas. ISA believes in the value of IT as both a course of study in its own right, as well as a tool to empower students and enhance their organisation, creativity and achievement in all curriculum areas.
ISA has adopted the International Society for Technology in Education's (ISTE) Educational Technology Standards and Performance Indicators for Students. The ISTE technology standards are organised into six strands, categorising "what students should know and be able to do, to learn effectively, and live productively in an increasingly digital world":
The students of ISA have access to a wide range of hardware, software and online resources to support their learning.
Students in the lower elementary grades (Kindergarten, Grade 1 and Grade 2) have one scheduled, 45-minute lesson per week, emphasising the introduction to, and the acquisition of, IT skills. Students in Grades 3-5 learn IT skills in the context of the learning that takes place in the classroom and across the curriculum. Each year, students are introduced to new skills or reinforce skills within the 6 key areas of the Elementary IT programme (as defined by the NETS*S strands).
The K-5 IT specialist works closely with classroom teachers to integrate classroom activities/topics into IT lessons while working to facilitate the integration of IT skills into all classes. In this way, students learn IT skills in the context of their work in the classroom. The use of IT enhances the children's day-to-day learning.
MS Computer Studies
This semester course will focus on learning a variety of digital tools to use in the classroom through creative projects including: producing, filming, and editing videos on cloud-based video editing software (WeVideo); designing and modelling buildings using 3D modelling software (SketchUp Make); manipulating images and designing magazine covers using photo editing software (Photoshop); how to manage, share, and collaborate on the cloud through the use of Google Docs and Slides; and how to design and build an informative website using Google Sites. The class will also focus on keyboarding skills. Lastly, students will be expected to develop effective searches on the Internet and identify accurate information while also learning to use social networks responsibly.
MS Design Technology
In this year-long course, students will be introduced to a broad range of technology concepts, skills and applications. Depending on class size and student interests, there is a number of possibilities for focus units throughout the year, including but not limited to:
Game Programming introduces students to the basics of computer science, logic and problem-solving using Python. Python is a multi-purpose syntax-based programming language that has been used to program YouTube, Instagram and more. The final project will be to design and develop a fully functioning arcade-style game using Python.
Graphic Arts is an introduction to elements of design, spatial relationships, typography, photography and imagery as they apply to practical visual solutions for advertising, marketing, logo design, Web design, and fine arts. This unit will develop students’ graphic design skills employing 2D and 3D digital tools, materials and procedures.
Design Technology introduces students to a wide range of concepts and practical skills in designing, developing and making products that solve genuine, relevant problems within different contexts. At this unit’s core is creativity and imagination. Students will have the opportunity to focus on specific aspects of architectural design, product design, systems and control, and electronics. The subject draws on a broad range of subject knowledge from related disciplines such as Math, Science, Engineering, Computing, and Art.
MS Lego Robotics
This semester course is designed to promote problem-solving skills and introductory computer programming and logic skills, using LEGO® MINDSTORMS® robotics kits. In this course, students design and build programmable robots using motors, sensors, gears, wheels, axles, and other technical components. By using hands-on robotics, students will gain a better understanding of how technology works in real world applications. In working towards solutions, students will build, test, troubleshoot and revise designs to improve robot performance, while gaining practical, hands-on experience using mathematical concepts such as estimating and measuring distance, time and speed. A culminating project is completion of the LEGO Space Challenge – a series of eight robot programming challenges.
The Computer Science Course is split into two main units: ‘Theory of Computer Science’ and ‘Practical Problem Solving and Programming’, in line with the units of the Cambridge IGCSE in Computer Science.
Each year of the course can be taken as a stand-alone Computer Science credit, or the two years can be taken with the option to sit the IGCSE examination at the end of the second year. In each year teaching time will be split between the two units.
The Cambridge IGCSE syllabus aims to develop:
For further information see; Cambridge IGCSE Computer Science 0478
Design Technology is a creative, hands-on and practical subject. Using creativity and imagination, students will design, construct and evaluate products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts that address real needs. Students will acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on other subjects such as math, science, technology and art. They will be exposed to many new technologies in the design process and will develop hands-on skills during product construction. The designing, building and evaluation of created products is central to the course. High-quality design technology makes a vital contribution to the creativity, culture, wealth and wellbeing of the global community and through evaluation of products students will develop a critical understanding of their impact on daily life and the wider world.
This Media Studies course helps students to develop a wider understanding and appreciation of the media, both historical and contemporary, and its role in society, culture and politics. Students will engage with the perspectives of consumers and producers of media and analyse a range of texts and contexts from the worlds of television, media promotion, music and news. They will also apply their knowledge and understanding of media language and representations to create media products of their own, expressing and communicating meaning to an intended audience. Please note that the core resources are chosen by the exam board and are deemed appropriate for this age group which may include texts rated 15.
This Media Studies course will enable learners to:
IB Computer Science 1, 2
2 credits/2 years
Computer Science is a Group 4 subject in the IB that sits alongside other sciences such as Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Design Technology etc. The course is offered at two levels: Standard (SL) and Higher (HL). The two-year course, based on core concepts of computational thinking and algorithm design/development, uses current and popular programming languages as its base. It explores various issues surrounding computing in today’s world and is aimed to broaden the learner’s problem solving and critical thinking skills. Some of the key highlights of the course are as follows:
The Case Study component allows students to get a closer look at a real world system and explore various issues – technical, ethical and social – surrounding the system being considered for examination. The internal assessment is a complete software solution, designed and documented to address a real problem with an identified end-user.
ISA has in excess of 500 student-use desktops, laptops and tablet devices. ISA has five computer labs that can accommodate a full class, as well as two small-group project labs. Each lab is well equipped with access to printers, scanners, digital cameras and other specialist peripherals. There are four mobile laptop trolleys and five iPad sets, which can be booked and deployed as needed throughout the school. In addition, in grades 3 to 8, each class has a dedicated trolley of 20 Chromebooks, allowing for an in-class 1:1 laptop program, supported by the school's Google Apps for Education domain (isa247.org.uk)
All classrooms, Preschool through to Grade 12, are equipped with at least 2 networked computers for student use. Each classroom is fitted with a ceiling-mounted projector and built-in audio system. Many classrooms also have interactive whiteboards and visualisers (document cameras) installed.
The campus is covered by a site-wide wireless network, accepting connections from ISA hardware, students' personal devices and guest users. Parents and visitors to ISA can obtain a guest wireless access account from Reception or the IT Office.
Within the Library and the school's entrance foyer, there are public access computer terminals with Internet access.