Becoming adept at using computers and various digital media will help prepare pupils to thrive in a rapidly changing world, where technology is critical to long-term success. Additionally, the technologies explored will help pupils to improve their interaction with other students, as well as staff, by encouraging pupils to develop their broader communication and literacy skills in a variety of ways. For some, this may be through the use of visual and written materials, such as photographs, symbols and large print, as well as ICT and other technological aids. For others, communication and literacy skills may be developed via alternative and augmentative communication, e.g., facial expressions and gestures.
ICT, in particular the use of computers and entertainment systems, is engaging and motivating for many pupils. By using them in a supervised school setting, pupils are likely to become better at using them independently, at home and elsewhere, to structure their leisure time more enjoyably and appropriately. ICT can also encourage creativity and help pupils to take greater responsibility for their own learning. By becoming better able to plan and organise their ideas, they may find it easier to produce and present work of a high standard.
Children at Bensham Manor have access to a range of cutting-edge technologies in the classroom and around the school that supports their learning. In 2019, for example, the CDM department is introducing a new Entry 3 award that will enable students to focus on the areas of digital photography and digital music, as well as audio and video software. This qualification promotes further knowledge of the creative arts. Furthermore, it breaks down barriers, which historically may have prevented students from progressing to the next level of learning. All pupils will have at least two lessons a week of Computing and Digital Media. This will particularly support the 20% of our Year 11 leavers who specialise in Digital Media at college.