Curriculum Planning – Connecting your learning
The development of any app or game involves many skills.
The Victorian Curriculum outlines learning areas which integrate to support students’ development of a good game or challenge. A game or app development requires:
- skills and understanding of digital technologies
- processes and understandings of design technologies
- use of critical and creative and thinking, and
- ethical considerations . . .
. . . and that is all before you get to the content or subject matter of your game or app.
If it’s a historical game or app it has to be historically accurate. A scientific or mathematical game or app needs to be factually correct. Game creators and app developers need to respect their players/users enough to do the best job they can, and it can always include some humour!
Victorian Curriculum – Levels 3 and 4
Across the band, students will have had opportunities to create a range of digital solutions, such as interactive adventures that involve user choice, modelling simplified real-world systems and simple guessing games. Students further develop their computational thinking skills using the concept of abstraction to analyse simple problems and use techniques such as summarising facts to deduce conclusions. They record simple solutions to problems through text and diagrams and develop their designing skills. They initially follow prepared algorithms and progress to describing their own that support branching (choice of options) and user input. Their solutions are developed using appropriate software including visual programming languages that use graphical elements rather than text instructions.
Creating Digital Solutions – Level 4
- Define simple problems, and describe and follow a sequence of steps and decisions involving branching and user input (algorithms) needed to solve them (VCDTCD023)
- Develop simple solutions as visual programs (VCDTCD024)
- Explain how student-developed solutions and existing information systems meet common personal, school or community needs (VCDTCD025)
By the end of level 4, students define simple problems and design and develop digital solutions using algorithms that involve decision-making and user input. They explain how their developed solutions and existing information systems meet their purposes.
Creating Designed Solutions – Level 4
By the end of Level 4, students explain how solutions are designed to best meet the needs of the communities and their environments. They describe contributions of people in design and technologies occupations. Students describe how the features of technologies can be used to create designed solutions for each of the prescribed technologies contexts.
Investigating Critique needs or opportunities for designing and explore and test a variety of materials, components, tools and equipment and the techniques needed to create designed solutions (VCDSCD028)
Generating Generate, develop, and communicate design ideas and decisions using appropriate technical terms and graphical representation techniques (VCDSCD029)
Producing Select and use materials, components, tools and equipment using safe work practices to produce designed solutions (VCDSCD030)
Evaluating Evaluate design ideas, processes and solutions based on criteria for success developed with guidance and including care for the environment and communities (VCDSCD031)
Planning and Managing Plan a sequence of production steps when making designed solutions (VCDSCD032)
By the end of level 4, Students create designed solutions for each of the prescribed technologies contexts. They explain needs or opportunities and evaluate ideas and designed solutions against identified criteria for success, including sustainability considerations. They develop and expand design ideas and communicate these using models and drawings including annotations and symbols. Students plan and sequence major steps in design and production. They identify appropriate technologies and techniques and demonstrate safe work practices when creating designed solutions.
In Levels 3 and 4, the curriculum focuses on developing the knowledge, skills and understanding to improve and monitor thinking. Students learn and consider the advantages of different thinking techniques. Students learn there are different ways to respond to problems, visualise thinking and think more effectively.
Questions and Possibilities
- Construct and use open and closed questions for different purposes (VCCCTQ010)
- Explore reactions to a given situation or problem and consider the effect of pre-established preferences (VCCCTQ011)
- Investigate different techniques to sort facts and extend known ideas to generate novel and imaginative ideas (VCCCTQ012)
- Examine and use the structure of a basic argument, with an aim, reasons and conclusion to present a point of view (VCCCTR013)
- Distinguish between main and peripheral ideas in own and others information and points of view (VCCCTR014)
- Investigate why and when the consequences of a point of view should be considered (VCCCTR015)
- Identify and use ‘If, then…’ and ‘what if…’ reasoning (VCCCTR016)
- Explore distinctions when organising and sorting information and ideas from a range of sources (VCCCTR017)
Consider concrete and pictorial models to facilitate thinking, including a range of visualisation strategies (VCCCTM018)
Examine an increased range of learning strategies, including visualisation, note-taking, peer instruction and incubation, and reflect on how these can be applied to different tasks to reach a goal (VCCCTM019)
- Investigate a range of problem-solving strategies, including brainstorming, identifying, comparing and selecting options, and developing and testing hypotheses (VCCCTM020)
By the end of Level 4, students explain how to construct open and closed questions and use them for different purposes. Students select and apply techniques to generate a range of ideas that extend how problems are solved. Students describe and structure arguments with clearly identified aims, premises and conclusions. They use and explain a range of strategies to develop their arguments. They identify the need to make distinctions and apply strategies to make these.
In Levels 3 and 4, the curriculum focuses on developing the knowledge, skills and understandings to evaluate particular acts and to identify and critically respond to ethical problems. Students extend their vocabulary and begin to reflect on means and ends. Students develop an understanding that particular acts and their outcomes can be valued differently by different people, and extend their understanding of factors that may affect decision-making and actions
- Explore the contested meaning of concepts including fairness and harm and how they can seem to differ in different situations (VCECU004)
- Explore the extent to which particular acts might be regarded by different people as good or bad, right or wrong, better or worse, and explain why (VCECU005)
- Discuss the ways to identify ethical considerations in a range of problems (VCECU006)
Decision Making and Actions
Victorian Curriculum – Levels 5 and 6
Across the band, students will have had opportunities to create a range of digital solutions, such as games or quizzes and interactive stories and animations. When creating solutions, students analyse problems clearly by defining appropriate data and requirements. When designing, they consider how users will interact with the solutions, and check and validate their designs to increase the likelihood of creating working solutions. Students increase the sophistication of their algorithms by identifying repetition and incorporate repeat instructions or structures when developing their solutions through visual programming, such as reading user input until an answer is guessed correctly in a quiz. They evaluate their solutions and examine the sustainability of their own solutions and existing information systems.
Creating Digital Solutions – Level 6
- Define problems in terms of data and functional requirements, drawing on previously solved problems to identify similarities (VCDTCD030)
- Design a user interface for a digital system, generating and considering alternative design ideas (VCDTCD031)
- Design, modify and follow simple algorithms represented diagrammatically and in English, involving sequences of steps, branching, and iteration (VCDTCD032)
- Develop digital solutions as simple visual programs (VCDTCD033)
- Explain how student-developed solutions and existing information systems meet current and future community and sustainability needs (VCDTCD034)
By the end of level 6, students define problems in terms of data and functional requirements and design solutions by developing algorithms to address the problems. They incorporate decision-making, repetition and user interface design into their designs and develop their digital solutions, including a visual program. Students explain how information systems and their developed solutions meet current and future needs, taking sustainability into account.
Creating Designed Solutions – Level 6
By the end of Level 6 students describe some competing considerations in the design of solutions taking into account sustainability. They describe how design and technologies contribute to meeting present and future needs. Students explain how the features of technologies impact on designed solutions for each of the prescribed technologies contexts.
Investigating Critique needs or opportunities for designing, and investigate materials, components, tools, equipment and processes to achieve intended designed solutions (VCDSCD038)
Generating Generate, develop, communicate and document design ideas and processes for audiences using appropriate technical terms and graphical representation techniques (VCDSCD039)
Producing Apply safe procedures when using a variety of materials, components, tools, equipment and techniques to produce designed solutions (VCDSCD040)
Evaluating Negotiate criteria for success that include consideration of environmental and social sustainability to evaluate design ideas, processes, and solutions (VCDSCD041)
Planning and Managing Develop project plans that include consideration of resources when making designed solutions (VCDSCD042)
By the end of level 6, students create designed solutions for each of the prescribed technologies contexts, suitable for identified needs or opportunities. They suggest criteria for success, including sustainability considerations and use these to evaluate their ideas and designed solutions. They combine design ideas and communicate these to audiences using graphical representation techniques and technical terms. Students record project plans including production processes. They select and use appropriate technologies and techniques correctly and safely to produce designed solutions.
In Levels 5 and 6, the curriculum focuses on developing the knowledge, skills and understanding to test the strength of thinking. Students develop their capacity to deliberately manage their thinking. Students explore common errors that can occur in thinking
Questions and Possibilities
- Examine how different kinds of questions can be used to identify and clarify information, ideas, and possibilities (VCCCTQ021)
- Experiment with alternative ideas and actions by setting preconceptions to one side (VCCCTQ022)
- Identify and form links and patterns from multiple information sources to generate non-routine ideas and possibilities (VCCCTQ023)
- Investigate common reasoning errors including contradiction and inconsistency, and the influence of context (VCCCTR024)
- Consider the importance of giving reasons and evidence and how the strength of these can be evaluated (VCCCTR025)
- Consider when analogies might be used in expressing a point of view and how they should be expressed and evaluated (VCCCTR026)
- Examine the difference between valid and sound arguments and between inductive and deductive reasoning, and their degrees of certainty (VCCCTR027)
- Explore what a criterion is, different kinds of criteria, and how to select appropriate criteria for the purposes of filtering information and ideas (VCCCTR028)
- Investigate thinking processes using visual models and language strategies (VCCCTM029)
- Examine learning strategies, including constructing analogies, visualising ideas, summarising and paraphrasing information and reflect on the application of these strategies in different situations (VCCCTM030)
- Investigate how ideas and problems can be disaggregated into smaller elements or ideas, how criteria can be used to identify gaps in existing knowledge and assess and test ideas and proposals (VCCCTM031)
By the end of Level 6, students apply questioning as a tool to focus or expand thinking. They use appropriate techniques to copy, borrow and compare aspects of existing solutions in order to identify relationships and apply these to new situations. Students distinguish between valid and sound arguments and between deductive and inductive reasoning. They explain how reasons and evidence can be evaluated. They explain and apply basic techniques to construct valid arguments and test the strength of arguments.
In Levels 5 and 6, the curriculum focuses on developing the knowledge, skills and understandings to evaluate the significance of ethical matters. Students explore the basis of a range of ethical principles and reflect on means and ends. Students consider decision-making approaches based on thinking about the consequences and duties. Students develop an understanding that a range of factors play a role in ethical decision-making
- Examine the contested meaning of concepts including truth and happiness and the extent to which these concepts are and should be valued (VCECU009)
- Discuss how ethical principles can be used as the basis for action, considering the influence of cultural norms, religion, world views and philosophical thought on these principles (VCECU010)
- Examine how problems may contain more than one ethical issue (VCECU011)
Decision Making and Actions
Victorian Curriculum – Levels 7 and 8
Across the band, students will have had opportunities to create a range of digital solutions, such as interactive web applications or programmable multimedia assets or simulations of relationships between objects in the real world. They broaden their programming experiences to include general-purpose programming languages and incorporate subprograms into their solutions. They apply systems thinking skill to evaluate their developed and existing solutions, considering time, tasks, data and the safe and sustainable use of information systems and anticipate any risks associated with the use or adoption of such systems
Creating Digital Solutions – Levels 7 and 8
- Define and decompose real-world problems taking into account functional requirements and sustainability (economic, environmental, social), technical and usability constraints (VCDTCD040)
- Design the user experience of a digital system, generating, evaluating and communicating alternative designs (VCDTCD041)
- Design algorithms represented diagrammatically and in English, and trace algorithms to predict output for a given input and to identify errors (VCDTCD042)
- Develop and modify programs with user interfaces involving branching, iteration and functions using a general-purpose programming language (VCDTCD043)
- Evaluate how well student-developed solutions and existing information systems meet needs, are innovative and take account of future risks and sustainability (VCDTCD044)
By the end of Level 8: Students distinguish between different types of networks and their suitability in meeting defined purposes. Students explain how text, image and sound data can be represented and secured in digital systems and presented using digital systems. They analyse and evaluate data from a range of sources to model solutions and create information. They manage the collaborative creation of interactive ideas, information and projects and use appropriate codes of conduct when communicating online. Students define and decompose problems in terms of functional requirements and constraints. They design user experiences and algorithms incorporating branching and iterations, and develop, test, and modify digital solutions. Students evaluate information systems and their solutions in terms of meeting needs, innovation and sustainability.
Creating Designed Solutions – Levels 7 and 8
By the end of Level 8 students explain factors that influence the design of solutions to meet present and future needs. They explain the contribution of design and technology innovations and enterprise to society. Students explain how the features of technologies impact on designed solutions and influence design decisions for each of the prescribed technologies contexts.
Investigating Critique needs or opportunities for designing and investigate, analyse and select from a range of materials, components, tools, equipment and processes to develop design ideas (VCDSCD049)
Generating Generate, develop and test design ideas, plans and processes using appropriate technical terms and technologies including graphical representation techniques (VCDSCD050)
Producing Effectively and safely use a broad range of materials, components, tools, equipment and techniques to produce designed solutions (VCDSCD051)
Evaluating Independently develop criteria for success to evaluate design ideas, processes and solutions and their sustainability (VCDSCD052)
Planning and Managing Use project management processes to coordinate production of designed solutions (VCDSCD053)
By the end of level 8, students create designed solutions for each of the prescribed technologies contexts based on an evaluation of needs or opportunities. They develop criteria for success, including sustainability considerations, and use these to judge the suitability of their ideas and designed solutions and processes. They create and adapt design ideas, make considered decisions and communicate to different audiences using appropriate technical terms and a range of technologies and graphical representation techniques. Students apply project management skills to document and use project plans to manage production processes. They independently and safely produce effective designed solutions for the intended purpose.
In Levels 7 and 8, the curriculum focuses on developing the knowledge, skills, and understanding to analyse thinking and the selection and application of a range of techniques to support effective thinking. Students learn strategies to assist them synthesise their thinking. Students develop an understanding that flexibility in thinking is often required and that certainty in thinking can be influenced by a range of factors.
Questions and Possibilities
- Consider how to approach and use questions that have different elements, including factual, temporal and conceptual elements (VCCCTQ032)
- Suspend judgments temporarily and consider how preconceptions may limit ideas and alternatives (VCCCTQ033)
- Synthesise information from multiple sources and use lateral thinking techniques to draw parallels between known and new solutions and ideas when creating original proposals and artefacts (VCCCTQ034)
- Examine common reasoning errors including circular arguments and cause and effect fallacies (VCCCTR035)
- Investigate the difference between a description, an explanation and a correlation and scepticism about cause and effect (VCCCTR036)
- Investigate when counter examples might be used in expressing a point of view (VCCCTR037)
- Consider how to settle matters of fact and matters of value and the degree of confidence in the conclusions (VCCCTR038)
- Examine how to select appropriate criteria and how criteria are used in clarifying and challenging arguments and ideas (VCCCTR039)
- Consider a range of strategies to represent ideas and explain and justify thinking processes to others (VCCCTM040)
- Examine a range of learning strategies and how to select strategies that best meet the requirements of a task (VCCCTM041)
- Consider how problems can be segmented into discrete stages, new knowledge synthesised during problem-solving and criteria used to assess emerging ideas and proposals (VCCCTM042)
By the end of Level 8, students prioritise the elements of a question and justify their selection. Students demonstrate flexibility in thinking by using a range of techniques in order to repurpose existing ideas or solutions to meet needs in new contexts. Students explain different ways to settle matters of fact and matters of value and issues concerned with these. They explain and apply a range of techniques to test the strength of arguments. Students use a range of strategies to represent ideas and explain and justify thinking processes to others. They evaluate the effectiveness of a range of learning strategies and select strategies that best meet the requirements of a task. Students independently segment problems into discrete stages, synthesise new knowledge at intermediate stages during problem-solving and develop and apply criteria to assess ideas, proposals and emerging thinking.
In Levels 7 and 8, the curriculum focuses on developing the knowledge, skills, and understandings to explore the tensions related to ethical concepts and decision making. Students extend their exploration of the two major ways to approach ethical deliberation – thinking about consequences and thinking about duties, including the extent of ethical obligation. Students develop an understanding that ethical problems may not be resolved in a straightforward way.
- Explore the contested meaning of concepts including freedom, justice, and rights and responsibilities, and the extent they are and should be valued by different individuals and groups (VCECU014)
- Investigate why ethical principles may differ between people and groups, considering the influence of cultural norms, religion, world views and philosophical thought (VCECU015)
- Investigate criteria for determining the relative importance of matters of ethical concern (VCECU016)
Decision Making and Actions
Victorian Curriculum – Levels 9 and 10
Across the band, students will have had opportunities to analyse problems and design, develop and evaluate a range of digital solutions, such as database-driven websites and artificial intelligence engines and simulations.
Creating Digital Solutions – Levels 9 and 10
- Define and decompose real-world problems precisely, taking into account functional and non-functional requirements and including interviewing stakeholders to identify needs (VCDTCD050)
- Design the user experience of a digital system, evaluating alternative designs against criteria including functionality, accessibility, usability and aesthetics (VCDTCD051)
- Design algorithms represented diagrammatically and in structured English and validate algorithms and programs through tracing and test cases (VCDTCD052)
- Develop modular programs, applying selected algorithms and data structures including using an object-oriented programming language (VCDTCD053)
- Evaluate critically how well student-developed solutions and existing information systems and policies take account of future risks and sustainability and provide opportunities for innovation (VCDTCD054)
By the end of Level 10, students explain the control and management of networked digital systems and the data security implications of the interaction between hardware, software and users. Students explain simple data compression, and why content data are separated from presentation. They take account of privacy and security requirements when selecting and validating data and use digital systems to analyse, visualise and model salient aspects of data. Students share and collaborate online, establishing protocols for the legal and safe use, transmission and maintenance of data and projects. Students define and decompose complex problems in terms of functional and non-functional requirements. They design and evaluate user experiences and algorithms, and develop and test modular programs, including an object-oriented program. Students evaluate their solutions and information systems in terms of risk, sustainability and potential for innovation.
Creating Designed Solutions – Level 9 and 10
By the end of Level 10 students explain how people working in design and technologies occupations consider factors that impact on design decisions and the technologies used to create designed solutions. They identify the changes necessary to designed solutions to realise preferred futures they have described. When creating designed solutions for identified needs or opportunities students evaluate the features of technologies and their appropriateness for purpose for one or more of the technologies contexts
Investigating Critique needs or opportunities to develop design briefs and investigate and select an increasingly sophisticated range of materials, systems, components, tools and equipment to develop design ideas (VCDSCD060)
Generating Apply design thinking, creativity, innovation and enterprise skills to develop, modify and communicate design ideas of increasing sophistication (VCDSCD061)
Producing Work flexibly to safely test, select, justify and use appropriate technologies and processes to make designed solutions (VCDSCD062)
Evaluating Evaluate design ideas, processes, and solutions against comprehensive criteria for success recognising the need for sustainability (VCDSCD063)
Planning and Managing Develop project plans to plan and manage projects individually and collaboratively taking into consideration time, cost, risk and production processes (VCDSCD064)
By the end of level 10, students create designed solutions for each of the prescribed technologies contexts based on a critical evaluation of needs or opportunities. They establish detailed criteria for success, including sustainability considerations, and use these to evaluate their ideas and designed solutions and processes. They generate and connect design ideas and processes of increasing complexity and justify decisions. Students communicate and document projects, including marketing for a range of audiences. They independently and collaboratively apply sequenced production and management plans when producing designed solutions, making adjustments to plans when necessary. They select and use appropriate technologies skilfully and safely to produce quality designed solutions suitable for the intended purpose.
In Levels 9 and 10, the curriculum focuses on developing the knowledge, skills, and understanding to recognise and manage what is often implicit in thinking. Students learn and apply techniques to progress, analyse and evaluate thinking. Students develop an understanding that it is often necessary to take a range of perspectives and to challenge assumptions.
Questions and Possibilities
- Investigate the characteristics of effective questions in different contexts to examine information and test possibilities (VCCCTQ043)
- Suspend judgments to allow new possibilities to emerge and investigate how this can broaden ideas and solutions (VCCCTQ044)
- Challenge previously held assumptions and create new links, proposals, and artefacts by investigating ideas that provoke shifts in perspectives and cross boundaries to generate ideas and solutions(VCCCTQ045)
- Examine a range of rhetorical devices and reasoning errors, including false dichotomies and begging the question (VCCCTR046)
- Examine how to identify and analyse suppressed premises and assumptions (VCCCTR047)
- Investigate the nature and use of counter examples structured as arguments (VCCCTR048)
- Consider ambiguity and equivocation and how they affect the strength of arguments (VCCCTR049)
- Investigate use of additional or refined criteria when application of original criteria does not produce a clear conclusion (VCCCTR050)
- Critically examine their own and others thinking processes and discuss factors that influence thinking, including cognitive biases (VCCCTM051)
- Investigate how the use of a range of learning strategies can be monitored, evaluated and re-directed as necessary (VCCCTM052)
- Investigate the kind of criteria that can be used to rationally evaluate the quality of ideas and proposals, including the qualities of viability and workability (VCCCTM053)
By the end of Level 10, students construct and evaluate questions, including their own, for their effectiveness. They demonstrate a willingness to shift their perspective when generating ideas, resulting in new ways of perceiving solutions. Students structure complex valid arguments. They explain and apply a range of techniques to test validity within and between arguments. Students identify, articulate, analyse and reflect on their own and others thinking processes. They use, monitor, evaluate and redirect as necessary a range of learning strategies. Students develop, justify and refine criteria to evaluate the quality of ideas, proposals and thinking processes.
In Levels 9 and 10, the curriculum focuses on developing the knowledge, skills and understandings to analyse and evaluate ethical problems and their resolution and to identify and manage contestability in ethical matters. Students reflect on whether there are ethical concepts and principles common across people, groups and cultures.
- Investigate the connections and distinctions between and the relative value of concepts including fairness and equality, and respect and tolerance (VCECU019)
- Explore a range of ethical problems and examine the extent to which different positions are related to commonly held ethical concepts and principles, considering the influence of cultural norms, religion, world views and philosophical thought (VCECU020)
- Distinguish between the ethical and non-ethical dimensions of complex issues, including the distinction between ethical and legal issues (VCECU021)
Decision Making and Actions
Supporting Special Needs
- Students react to significant designed solutions that meet their needs.
- With guidance, students experience designed solutions in at least one technologies context. They begin to communicate their needs and indicate a choice or preference through accept and reject actions.
- Students react to the use of tools and equipment and experience the sequenced steps involved in producing a designed solution.
By the end of Level B:
- Students are using some familiar designed solutions appropriately to meet their needs.
- With guidance, students explore designed solutions in at least one technologies context. They experience designed solution ideas and select materials and components based on personal preferences.
- Students follow a design process step by step and use tools safely when prompted.
By the end of Level C:
- Students use and identify the purpose of familiar designed solutions. They match some designed solutions to a need.
- Students use designed solutions in at least two technologies contexts.
- With guidance, students reflect on created and produced designed solutions, developing ideas based on personal preferences. They begin to follow simple sequenced steps and teacher direction to use tools and equipment safely.
By the end of Level D:
- Students describe the purpose of familiar designed solutions and what needs they meet.
- Students use designed solutions in at least two technologies contexts, identifying significant features.
- With guidance, students create designed solutions evaluating their ideas based on personal preferences. They select materials based on some understanding of their properties and characteristics. They follow simple sequenced steps to create a designed solution and demonstrate safe use of tools and equipment.
Critical and Creative Thinking Achievement Standards: By the end of Level A:
- Students react to significant changes in their environment. Students generate ideas by using their senses to explore the characteristics of everyday objects and make choices between objects.
- Students begin to identify their personal preference and make choices about what they would like and dislike.
- Students are exposed to everyday problems and communicate their thinking through emotion responses. They experience the learning strategy of repetition and beginning to react in everyday routine activities.
- Students communicate when faced with a problem.
- Students use their senses and cause and effect to explore and understand the world around them. Students generate ideas based on their experiences and make choices in structured situations.
- Students begin to become aware of their own point of view through their emotions. Students answer ‘yes’ and ‘no’ questions which assist them to reflect on their learning and choice making.
- Students use learning strategies including repetition to participate in everyday routines and events. They use cause and effect to understand the world around them and solve problems.
By the end of level C:
- Students answer simple questions about familiar events and topics. They identify a familiar idea or experience with support and make choices from a range of options.
- Students can identify their own point of view. They use personal experience and examples to explain reasons. They connect present and past experience with support.
- Students predict what will happen next in a familiar routine. They practice some learning strategies including following a visual schedule.
- Students demonstrate some problem-solving approaches when faced with common everyday issues.
By the end of Level D:
- Students answer simple questions related to their own investigation, their feelings or a concept. They identify and describe an event or scientific experiment. They generate ideas based on past experience and make choices based on their personal preferences.
- Students can identify some components of a point of view. They draw on previous experience to assist with their ideas, reasoning and when drawing a conclusion.
- Students actively participate in structured thinking activities. They practice some learning strategies to assist them to organise and demonstrate their ideas.
- Students participate in problem solving activities and can articulate some possible solutions and their outcome in structured practical situations.