Expired - No Longer Available - Encryption Task (For verified UK teachers private use only)


Due to the overwhelming response to our CA2 post, Beautiful Education has again teamed up with Philip Lewis from UCL to produce a sample solution for A453 CA3 Encryption. If you would like access to the worked solution (which is intended to help you prepare for teaching and is not to be shared with students) please use the Beautiful Education Contact form providing your:

  • Full Name
  • School Name
  • Role
  • School Centre Number
  • School Email Address
  • School telephone number

We'll get back to you as soon as we can with the code. We may verify with a response email or two.

Algorithm Resources - Procedural Card Tricks


Card tricks are a great way to explain what an algorithm is. Professor Paul Curzon has written two books explaining how to perform card tricks and then how they actually work as procedural algorithms. I tried this one (21 Card Trick) it's impressive, easy to learn and works every time. Then, when it comes to explaining it, it's quite simple too. Here is a link to a Google folder where you can download Paul Curzon's Card Trick Book 1

The volunteer's chosen card always ends up in the middle, every time

The volunteer's chosen card always ends up in the middle, every time

Just four deals and it will be there = procedural algorithm

Just four deals and it will be there = procedural algorithm

Teacher Training Feedback


Putting the right building blocks in place at the right time is essential

Putting the right building blocks in place at the right time is essential

Giving the Why

Giving the Why

Ranging the classroom is just part of it.

Ranging the classroom is just part of it.

Our autumn staff training events are underway with very positive feedback so far. Moving forward we are going to extend the teaching and learning activities to include deliberate mistakes in code and Google Hangout one-to-one surgery sessions.

In-class support student feedback from Cardinal Pole School, Hackney


The prior learning of some students was deeply impressive.

The prior learning of some students was deeply impressive.

Programming can feel unnatural so we keep it ultra positive

Programming can feel unnatural so we keep it ultra positive

We aim to get the skill ramp up just right

We aim to get the skill ramp up just right

Classroom management is really put to the test when teaching programming

Classroom management is really put to the test when teaching programming

Thanks to Lisa Cookson at Cardinal Pole School for giving us the opportunity to test out some Python programming teaching and learning techniques. We are ecstatic about the great student feedback and will continually strive to improve our delivery methods.

Beautiful Education - Python Programming Basics Course


Teaching Python programming in schools can make you feel like you are starting out as an NQT again

Teaching Python programming in schools can make you feel like you are starting out as an NQT again

Python teaching includes quick thinking in a two to three tier classroom with lots of explaining, breakouts, and plenty of ranging the room for formative assessment opportunities.  Self-study sits alongside intensive support and students who just want to be left alone with challenges. It's all happening at Cardinal Pole School in Hackney and we are loving every minute of it.

With the help of the DFE and Hackney Learning Trust we have created an online resource for teaching some of the basics at KS3. 

Arduino - Touch the light sensor to activate the LED


Arduino and breadboard wired LED with light sensor activation

Arduino and breadboard wired LED with light sensor activation

Touch the light sensor to activate the LED 

Before the summer break I spent Monday evenings with my mentors at Hackspace learning about the Arduino system.  I think it is a great way to teach C derived programming languages and illustrate input-process-output in a concrete context. 

The benefit of Arduino is that you can make real stuff like a system to activate a LED when someone is standing on your doorstep, or to get a text when someone presses your doorbell. Arduino can be used to solve problems, the key focus in the new computing programme of study. 

Increasingly cool Arduino has a rapidly expanding following of hackers and tinkerers. 

So what's on offer here? 

Part of the work Beautiful Education has been doing has involved Google Hangouts and now we'd like to run a distance learning test with a willing partner. 

Would you like to get an Arduino demonstration of about 15 minutes to half an hour on Google Hangouts? Would you like us to organise an expert tutor to deliver an Arduino training course in Hackney or at your place?

Just get in touch

Using C derived languages to solve real problems

Using C derived languages to solve real problems

Python Programming to GCSE A* with Shahid Khan


With the support of the DfE and Hackney Learning Trust we arranged for Python expert Shahid Khan to deliver an eight week Python evening course for Hackney's Computer Science teachers. Hosted by the Petchey Academy in Hackney the aim was to deliver Python training beyond the basics, to emulate the level of difficulty students will experience in exams beyond September 2014. The level of determination and rigour delivered by the diligent staff who attended during very busy times is applauded; it really was hard but very rewarding.  Throughout the course, we developed teaching materials which pertain to the OCR Computing and Edexcel GCSE Computer Science GCSE. You are welcome to share them by accessing this public Beautiful Education Google Docs Folder

Shahid Khan

Shahid Khan

The building blocks of Python

The building blocks of Python

Digital Literacy starts with HTML and Javascript

With the support of the DfE and Hackney Learning Trust we arranged for Business Analyst Hal Saleh of Burberry, and now of BT, to spend an afternoon presenting Hackney teachers with industry standard HTML INSET. Hal, a former resident and student of Hackney, jumped at the chance to use his CSR time to give back. Hal has diligently spent thousands of hours mastering HTML, his forte in KS3! Hal walked us through the prominent characters who wove the web, the code, the browser wars and he went on to make predictions about the future of the global knowledge economy. Hal's key message is that HTML & JavaScript are the core, prerequisite digital literacy, synonymous with reading and writing English. Hal says it is essential we study and master it, "Bet on the Web."

Hal Saleh

Hal Saleh

Bringing it all together

Bringing it all together

Hackspace - the perfect third space for technical learning in Hackney

We are supporters of the Summerhill concept but we know it's not transferable to the grant maintained inner-city context. Well that's what we thought until we discovered Hackspace recommended to us by our tech training associate James Cadman. Hackspace on Hackney Road models what we believe to be the learning environment of the future, a place where you just turn up, choose what interests you, choose what you want to do, choose how to do it and choose when to do it. Staffed by friendly, approachable volunteers Hackspace is open 24 hours a day and the cost for all this? £10 a month sub. A truly amazing, inspirational find.

Funded by the DfE and Hackney Learning Trust, Beautiful Education will begin taking Hackney Computing teachers and students to Hackspace to inspire new teaching and learning strategies. We can't wait.

Random - just do what you want to do

Random - just do what you want to do

Learn - program an Arduino

Learn - program an Arduino

Create - use industry standard equipment

Create - use industry standard equipment

Hack - take tech apart

Hack - take tech apart

Build - a remote controlled hexopter

Build - a remote controlled hexopter

How Stuff Works - get your hands dirty

How Stuff Works - get your hands dirty

Learn from experts who volunteer to help you

Learn from experts who volunteer to help you