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Section Title Primary information Description and Notes Suggested resources
Lesson Length The expected lesson length will be approximately one hour

Some variation possible.

Assessment Level 1

Students The lesson is suitable for KS3 and KS4 students Since this is a new specification, the lesson is suitable for Year 7 to 9 students and differentiated by outcome  
Overall Focus This lesson is a more detailed look at the different types of networks, local and wide, or LAN and WAN. The lesson will look at the attributes and equipment in local and wide area networks.  Learners should be able to determine which one they are using at any particular time, i.e at school or out and about on their smartphones.

Lesson Links: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 36, 37, 38, 39

Key words LAN, WAN, ISP These words need to be reinforced throughout the series of lessons  
Assessment distinguish between local and wide area networks Evidence here will be the students showing a basic understanding of the main components of these two networks Explore different network designs and equipment and show an understanding of the features that are local or not
Key Questions Some questions to get learners thinking about the topics Some questions and examples will get the students thinking about what the main differences are between these two systems and how to identify them during use. How local is local and what are the main differences between a wide area and local network when looking at them?
Learning Objectives
  • To understand and describe network components
  • To explain, with examples, the aspects of a WAN
  • To understand how different parts of the WAN work
  • To show an understanding of some of the strengths and weaknesses of WANs
  • To understand some of the future developments, i.e. the cloud

Most students will be using these systems interchangeably all of the time without probably being fully aware.  They need to discuss and investigate the two types of network and be able to determine the key aspects of one over the other.

What is so special about the Cloud?  Is that the future?  Why?

If you are using the Learning Machine learning system, students can add their comments and material to this site as evidence of their growing understanding.  The site, if used consistently, will show progression via charts of activity and outcomes.
Teaching and Learning Elements
  • a detailed view of network devices and their functions
  • a look at the main device capacities with examples
  • Students can break into groups and work on some more detailed aspects of network design
  • Class discussion and evaluation of the wider issues of network design and best practice
  • Summarize the key points and reinforce the importance future proofing

In this lesson we need to explore the main principles and equipment of networks and how these are used to solve local or more wide ranging needs.

Lesson Structure Possible structure
  1. investigate network equipment and specifications
  2. investigate a WAN
  3. group work to work on some of their own views and examples
  4. discuss what they have learned and what they can apply
  5. volunteers to share their work and explain how they came to their opinions
  6. highlight next week's focus and issue homework

Cloud computing

Students should be able to identify the main networking components and be able to use these to describe a Wide Area Network and also the main strengths and weaknesses of using this type of system.

What determines what makes it a Wide Area network and what are the physical restrictions that need to be taken into account.

Homework Get students to blog about the development of the Cloud Students can vary their homework depending on their level of understanding. Get students to document their experience on their portfolio system for assessment


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