Computing Progress logo
Community Supported
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 The lesson focus, as part of a series, will be introducing how abstraction is used, via instructions, to computers. This lesson will follow on from the previous lesson and acts as a way to consolidate their learning and understand and for them to evidence this understanding through class based observation and their feedback comments

Lesson Links: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 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, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39

Key words abstraction, programming language, instruction, open source, digital, file types, variable These words need to be reinforced throughout the series of lessons  
Assessment Follow instructions to develop a software abstraction Evidence here can be your own observations of the work created by the students that shows a growing awareness of how to use software abstractions.  
Key Questions Some questions to get learners thinking about the topics There are some potentially difficult ideas here, but it should be possible to gently build on their understanding through clear worked examples How easy is it to make shapes on these programs?  What are the hardest/simplest parts?  Can you give an example of how these use abstraction?
Learning Objectives
  • To understand and apply abstractions and instructions in software to make other elements
  • To describe and explain, with examples, how instructions can be formed to create a series of objects and actions
  • To understand how parts of instructions can be changed to make different results and to know what to change and how

The main learning objective is for them to appreciate how important accuracy is in their instructions and that abstract ideas can make everyday things like shapes

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
  • Continue with more detailed examples of computer functions in your chosen software and test different variables to make shapes and patterns
  • A teacher led demonstration of using a visual programing software to create a shape (s)
  • Students can break into groups and work on their own examples of shapes and begin to document what and why
  • Class discussion and evaluation of the wider uses of instructions
  • Summarize the key points and reinforce the importance of instructions






Continue on from previous lesson.

Use some of the student's own work and share with the group and discuss the quality of the instructions chosen.  Question students about how and why they did what they did.  Check for understanding.

This lesson builds upon the previous lesson to progress the student's understanding further through practice and demonstration, interspersed with more detailed questions to check their knowledge.
Lesson Structure Possible timings
  1. check where they have got to in terms of their understanding
  2. show students some more detailed examples of visual programming tools and output
  3. group work to work on some of their own possible designs.  Share good examples as the lesson progresses to reinforce instructions and accuracy.
  4. discuss what they have learned and what they can apply
  5. volunteers to share their work and explain how instructions work
  6. highlight next week's focus and issue homework

It would be useful before hand to have some of these programs added to your network or check that they are accessible and work on your network (i.e. some need java and may not work because of strict network security)

If you use Scratch Logo, see what complex ideas the students can come up with on their own

Work on some additional flow-chart models to show the process of progress through a set of instructions and things like feedback loops.  A robot or computer, given a "bad" instruction, will not know and will keep doing it.  You could also introduce the idea of iteration, to show that some things get repeated, for example, logging on to a computer, the operating system will keep iterating the password request until the user gives the right one.

This handout is useful for learning the parts of a flow-chart and therefore algorithms.

Homework Get students to spend the intervening time finding one or two examples of software models used in the real world Students can vary their homework depending on their level of understanding Get students to document their experience on their portfolio system for assessment


Print Friendly, PDF & Email