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Carl PlantSir, I've seen many articles that insist coding and computational thinking should be the building blocks of the UK’s IT curriculum. While this is true, it might not be enough, unless combined with the practical application of coding. This means teaching children how to use technology to solve physical, real-world problems.

Our advantage is that this practical mindset is hard coded into children and young people; they intuitively solve problems with technology. They Google search for a tutorial or an app that allows them to solve their dilemma, or hack hardware to make it work for them. But we have to ensure that this is applied in the context of work, not just leisure, which is where the curriculum comes in.

This natural curiosity and practical thinking should be nurtured, not smothered, by schools. In Stoke-on-Trent, we've already started doing this, by organising hack labs in schools and creating a dedicated digital innovation centre, where young people and innovation enthusiasts can learn how to use technology to overcome day-to-day and business obstacles.

Apart from assessing how our children are performing in language and arithmetic, schools should teach the next generation coding and hardware hacking for practical use. This additional, future proof, skill will make them independent and capable individuals who are prepared for work.

Best regards,

Carl Plant

Technical Director