Lesson 1: What's a network?

Children learn what is meant by the terms 'network', 'device' and 'wireless', which are essential to their understanding of what a network is and its purpose

Before the lesson

Download classroom resources

Learning objective

  • To understand what a network is and create an informative poster 

National curriculum

Pupils should be taught to:

  • Understand computer networks, including the internet; how they can provide multiple services, such as the World Wide Web, and the opportunities they offer for communication and collaboration
  • Select, use and combine a variety of software (including internet services) on a range of digital devices to design and create a range of programs, systems and content that accomplish given goals, including collecting, analysing, evaluating and presenting data and information

Success criteria

Cross-curricular links

Attention grabber

Main event


Pupils needing extra support: If creating a glossary, allow them to stick in the pictures and definitions used in the Activity: Network sorting. Focus on what a network is over other success criteria.


Pupils working at greater depth: Should explain clearly what a network is and why they are useful in their posters, as well as using appropriate images and layout.

Wrapping up

Assessing pupils' progress and understanding


Created by:
Sway Grantham,  
Computing specialist
Sway Grantham (@SwayGrantham) is a Primary School Teacher, a CAS Master Teacher and Specialist Leader in Education for Primary ICT. She also has a BCS Certificate in Computer Science Teaching (Primary). She has written several curricula and conducted research into the…
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