Plenty to do

18th September 1998 at 01:00
ESSENTIALS FOR INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY. IT Skills KS1. Communicating Information KS2. Control Through Logo KS2. Handling Information KS2. By Samantha Uppal. Scholastic Pounds 6.99. CURRICULUM BANK: Information Technology Key Stage 2. By Rob Crompton and Philip Mann. Scholastic Pounds 13.99.

The common thread in these publications is that they all contain photocopiable worksheets. However, they focus on very different aspects of information and communication technology.

The range of titles from Samantha Uppal covers aspects of the IT curriculum at key stages 1 and 2 and the Scottish equivalents. Each publication contains 32 pages with a brief introduction and concise explanations of the worksheets. The worksheets, which take up 80 per cent of each publication, provide a reliable source of ideas for busy teachers.

A wide range of activities is included which acknowledge that many primary classrooms have only one computer. Therefore the activities will make children plan before they use it.

The Curriculum Bank takes a different approach, focusing on the use of IT in a broad range of curriculum areas at ks2. This is a comprehensive, well-constructed publication. A useful overview links learning objectives, curriculum area and computer activity. The main part of the book gives detailed information on a range of activities, and provides ideas for extension of the work and for assessment.

Advice on group size and duration is also given for each activity. The Curriculum Bank will be invaluable to ks2 teachers wishing to integrate IT into other subjects. While all of these publications are worth purchasing, if I was a ks2 teacher with a limited budget, I'd buy the Curriculum Bank.

Les Watson is dean of learning and information services at Cheltenham and Gloucester College of Higher Education.

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