• raspberry pi
  • National Centre for Computing Education logo

Get Started Teaching Computing in Primary Schools: Preparing to teach 5 - 11 year olds

Improve your subject knowledge and develop inclusive lessons to teach computing to primary school pupils (aged 5 to 11 years old).

495 enrolled on this course

Get Started Teaching Computing in Primary Schools: Preparing to teach 5 - 11 year olds
  • Duration4 weeks
  • Weekly study2 hours
  • 100% onlineTry this course for free
  • Extra BenefitsFrom $49Find out more

Learn key concepts from the computing curriculum alongside education experts.

It’s crucial for young people to develop their computing knowledge and skills so that they can understand and participate in our increasingly digital world - being creators rather than solely consumers.

On this four-week course you’ll start by thinking about why it’s important for your primary school students (aged 5-11) to learn computing. You’ll then explore the topics that you should cover, and ways that you can plan and teach computing lessons effectively.

You’ll investigate how to develop and teach a comprehensive computing curriculum. You’ll do this by examining the Teach Computing Curriculum, a free resource with everything you need to teach computing at primary school, including lesson plans, slides, worksheets, homework and assessment. You’ll also have the chance to practice modifying a lesson from this resource to fit your own context.

Improve your knowledge of primary computing and your confidence in the classroom.

You’ll be guided through key concepts, including computing systems and networks, data and information, creating media, and programming, as well as the impact computing has on your pupils and the wider world. Along the way, you’ll learn how to adapt your lessons to make them inclusive to all, using your own teaching experience and understanding of your pupils.

As you progress, you’ll reflect on your learning. By the end of the course you’ll have a personalised action plan to aid your future practice and inform your professional development.

The course, designed by the Raspberry Pi Foundation, is part of the National Centre for Computing Education, funded by the Department for Education.

Download video: standard or HD

Skip to 0 minutes and 3 seconds Are you interested in teaching computing? How can your pupils become effective digital citizens? What’s the difference between an algorithm and a program? This free course will teach you about the importance of computing in primary school education for children age 5 to 11. You’ll get an introduction to the Teach Computing curriculum, including a full set of lesson plans and resources designed to meet the requirements of computing in the English national curriculum. As well as developing your subject knowledge, you’ll also consider effective pedagogy and create a personal action plan to aid your ongoing professional development. This four-week course also contains peer-led discussions, trainer interaction, and practical activities to adapt resources, making them more accessible and inclusive for your learners.

Skip to 0 minutes and 51 seconds So whether you’re a teacher with students of your own or simply curriculum curious, this course will help you to start teaching computing in primary schools. Sign up now at rpf.io/primarycomputing.


  • Week 1

    Why Computing?

    • Welcome to week one

      Find out more about what you'll be learning over the course, and meet our educators and the other participants who will accompany you.

    • Computing in our lives

      Learn how to relate the role of computers in modern society to your learners, by progressively introducing technology, information technology, and then computers and computer systems.

    • Computing in the curriculum

      Explore how computing has established its place in the primary curriculum and how the key concepts and skills are introduced through four key themes in the Teach Computing Curriculum.

  • Week 2

    Strands in Computing

    • Welcome to week two

      Find out more about what you'll learn this week.

    • Introduction to 'Computing systems and networks'

      Explore the progression through the 'Computing systems and networks' strand, from understanding what computers are to how they are connected to form networks.

    • Introduction to 'Programming'

      Discover the four key concepts associated with programming — sequence, repetition, selection, and variables — and ideas to teach these concepts to your learners.

    • Introduction to 'Data and information'

      How can your learners progress through learning about data and information, from grouping objects through to manipulating data in spreadsheets?

  • Week 3

    Overarching themes

    • Welcome to week three

      Find out what you'll be learning this week.

    • Introduction to 'Creating media'

      How can you introduce the concepts and skills of 'Creating media' to learners in your setting?

    • Overarching themes

      Explore why some themes are woven throughout the TCC, and look in more detail at the 'Safety and security' and 'Effective use of tools' themes

    • 'Impact of technology'

      Look at the considerations learners need to be mindful of when interacting with technology, and explore opportunities for cross-curricular computing activities.

  • Week 4

    Teaching Computing in your setting

    • Self-evaluation

      Reflect on your learning so far and evaluate your own knowledge and experience as a teacher, using the framework of Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK).

    • Meeting the needs of your class

      Adapt a lesson plan to meet the needs of your learners. You'll think carefully about including effective differentiation, how to be inclusive, and utilising informative assessment.

    • What next?

      Complete a personal action plan and find advice and guidance on how you can continue your professional development.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Identify the reasons for teaching computing to pupils of primary school age (ages 5 to 11)
  • Explain the contents of key curriculum strands within computing
  • Modify a computing lesson to include differentiation and assessment, and make it inclusive for all of your learners
  • Produce a personal action plan to inform your next steps in learning

Who is the course for?

This course will suit you if you’re a teacher of primary school children (aged 5-11) wanting to grow your computing knowledge and build confidence in helping your pupils to develop their computing knowledge and skills.

What software or tools do you need?

In order to access some of the resources used in this course, you will need to create an account with the National Centre for Computing Education.

You will also need access to Scratch 3, either online or installed on your computer.

Who will you learn with?

My name is Josh and I’m a Programme Co-ordinator for the Raspberry Pi Foundation. As a former teacher, I enjoy supporting learners and learning with them!

I’m a primary school teacher in London, England. Originally from California, I am a lover of sunshine, art and all things EduTech!

Who developed the course?

Raspberry Pi Foundation

The Raspberry Pi Foundation works to put the power of digital making into the hands of people all over the world, so they are capable of understanding and shaping our increasingly digital world.

National Centre for Computing Education

National Centre for Computing Education courses

Join this course

Start this couse for free, upgrade for extra benefits, or buy Unlimited to access this course and hundreds of other short courses for a year.



Join free and you will get:

  • Access to this course for 6 weeks



Upgrade this course and you will get:

  • Access to this course for as long as it’s on FutureLearn
  • A print and digital Certificate of Achievement once you’re eligible


$279.99 for one year

Buy Unlimited and you will get:

  • Access to this course, and hundreds of other FutureLearn short courses and tests for a year
  • A printable digital Certificate of Achievement on all short courses once you’re eligible
  • The freedom to keep access to any course you've achieved a digital Certificate of Achievement on, for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn
  • The flexibility to complete your choice of short courses in your own time within the year

Find out more about upgrades or Unlimited.