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The DfE is conducting a review of the primary and secondary National Curriculum.
This site contains the statutory programmes of study for National Curriculum subjects which maintained schools must follow until a new curriculum is in place.

ICT key stage 2

Statutory content

See related downloads and key actions

During key stage 2 pupils use a wider range of ICT tools and information sources to support their work in other subjects. They develop their research skills and decide what information is appropriate for their work. They begin to question the plausibility and quality of information. They learn how to amend their work and present it in a way that suits its audience.

Note: The general teaching requirement for health and safety applies in this subject.

Knowledge, skills and understanding

Finding things out

1. Pupils should be taught:

  1. to talk about what information they need and how they can find and use it [for example, searching the internet or a CD-ROM, using printed material, asking people]
  2. how to prepare information for development using ICT, including selecting suitable sources, finding information, classifying it and checking it for accuracy [for example, finding information from books or newspapers, creating a class database, classifying by characteristics and purposes, checking the spelling of names is consistent]
  3. to interpret information, to check it is relevant and reasonable and to think about what might happen if there were any errors or omissions.

Developing ideas and making things happen

2. Pupils should be taught:

  1. how to develop and refine ideas by bringing together, organising and reorganising text, tables, images and sound as appropriate [for example, desktop publishing, multimedia presentations]
  2. how to create, test, improve and refine sequences of instructions to make things happen and to monitor events and respond to them [for example, monitoring changes in temperature, detecting light levels and turning on a light]
  3. to use simulations and explore models in order to answer 'What if ... ?' questions, to investigate and evaluate the effect of changing values and to identify patterns and relationships [for example, simulation software, spreadsheet models].

Exchanging and sharing information

3. Pupils should be taught:

  1. how to share and exchange information in a variety of forms, including e-mail [for example, displays, posters, animations, musical compositions]
  2. to be sensitive to the needs of the audience and think carefully about the content and quality when communicating information [for example, work for presentation to other pupils, writing for parents, publishing on the internet].

Reviewing, modifying and evaluating work as it progresses

4. Pupils should be taught to:

  1. review what they and others have done to help them develop their ideas
  2. describe and talk about the effectiveness of their work with ICT, comparing it with other methods and considering the effect it has on others [for example, the impact made by a desktop-published newsletter or poster]
  3. talk about how they could improve future work.

Explanatory text

Note for 1a

Cross reference to English

En2 Reading: Reading for information

3. Pupils should be taught to:

a. scan texts to find information
b. skim for gist and overall impression
c. obtain specific information through detailed reading
d. draw on different features of texts, including print, sound and image, to obtain meaning
e. use organisational features and systems to find texts and information
f. distinguish between fact and opinion [for example, by looking at the purpose of the text, the reliability of information]
g. consider an argument critically


Note for 2a

Cross reference to English

En3 Writing: Planning and drafting

2. To develop their writing on paper and on screen, pupils should be taught to:

a. plan - note and develop initial ideas
b. draft - develop ideas from the plan into structured written text
c. revise - change and improve the draft
d. proofread - check the draft for spelling and punctuation errors, omissions and repetitions
e. present - prepare a neat, correct and clear final copy
f. discuss and evaluate their own and others' writing

Note for 2c

Cross reference to mathematics

Ma2 Number: Solving numerical problems

4. Pupils should be taught to:

d. recognise, represent and interpret simple number relationships, constructing and using formulae in words then symbols [for example, c = 15n is the cost, in pence, of n articles at 15p each]

Breadth of study

5. During the key stage, pupils should be taught the Knowledge, skills and understanding through:

  1. working with a range of information to consider its characteristics and purposes [for example, collecting factual data from the internet and a class survey to compare the findings]
  2. working with others to explore a variety of information sources and ICT tools [for example, searching the internet for information about a different part of the world, designing textile patterns using graphics software, using ICT tools to capture and change sounds]
  3. investigating and comparing the uses of ICT inside and outside school.

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