Design and Technology
Through our curriculum we aim to excite and ignite their interest in design and technology and prepare our children to participate in the development of a rapidly changing world. They design and make products for a specific need or purpose solving real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts. It involves children in learning about the world we live in and developing a wide range of skills through designing, making, evaluating and problem solving. Our children learn how to think creatively, work practically, organise themselves and work with knowledge and practical skills to bring about change though their ideas. Through our curriculum, children become discriminating and informed users of products and become innovators.
The national curriculum for design and technology aims to ensure that all pupils:
- develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world
- build and apply a repertoire of knowledge, understanding and skills in order to design and make high-quality prototypes and products for a wide range of users
- critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others
- understand and apply the principles of nutrition and learn how to cook
- design purposeful, functional, appealing products for themselves and other users based on design criteria
- generate, develop, model and communicate their ideas through talking, drawing, templates, mock-ups and, where appropriate, information and communication technology
- select from and use a range of tools and equipment to perform practical tasks [for example, cutting, shaping, joining and finishing]
- select from and use a wide range of materials and components, including construction materials, textiles and ingredients, according to their characteristics
- explore and evaluate a range of existing products
- evaluate their ideas and products against design criteria
- Technical knowledge
- build structures, exploring how they can be made stronger, stiffer and more stable
- explore and use mechanisms [for example, levers, sliders, wheels and axles] in their products
Cooking and nutrition
- use the basic principles of a healthy and varied diet to prepare dishes
- understand where food comes from
- use research and develop design criteria to inform the design of innovative, functional, appealing products that are fit for purpose, aimed at particular individuals or groups
- generate, develop, model and communicate their ideas through discussion, annotated sketches, cross-sectional and exploded diagrams, prototypes, pattern pieces and computer-aided design
- select from and use a wider range of tools and equipment to perform practical tasks [for example, cutting, shaping, joining and finishing], accurately
- select from and use a wider range of materials and components, including construction materials, textiles and ingredients, according to their functional properties and aesthetic qualities
- investigate and analyse a range of existing products
- evaluate their ideas and products against their own design criteria and consider the views of others to improve their work
- understand how key events and individuals in design and technology have helped shape the world
- apply their understanding of how to strengthen, stiffen and reinforce more complex structures
- understand and use mechanical systems in their products [for example, gears, pulleys, cams, levers and linkages]
- understand and use electrical systems in their products [for example, series circuits incorporating switches, bulbs, buzzers and motors]
- apply their understanding of computing to program, monitor and control their products
Cooking and nutrition
- understand and apply the principles of a healthy and varied diet
- prepare and cook a variety of predominantly savoury dishes using a range of cooking techniques
- understand seasonality, and know where and how a variety of ingredients are grown, reared, caught and processed
We meet National Curriculum expectations for design and technology through our use of Creative Curriculum themed planning/discreet topics. Our children have opportunities to experience a range of design and technology experiences through arranged in school visitors and organised visits. They also study key designers throughout history and consider their contributions to the locality and wider world.
Our children learn to cook healthy foods the basics of nutrition. We foster cross curricular links with maths and literacy and science through food technology and nutrition where the children investigate a variety of healthy foods, their origin and the valuable life skill in learning to cook. After School Cookery Club and Family Learning opportunities develop skills and interests in cooking and nutrition. Enrichment opportunities with a purpose are ongoing throughout the curriculum such as celebrations, supporting charities and visitors are invited to develop skills e.g. Expo Chef.
Our curriculum is further enriched by taking part in STEM challenges and local competitions promoting positive behaviours, confidence, engagement and enjoyment where all children are given the opportunity to succeed in design. Engagement in design is weaved into our creative curriculum through visits to local
aspirational and interesting structures such as The Baltic, The Sage, The Theatre Royal and the Quayside and bridges over the Tyne and various museums and churches in our region demonstrating how design has changed over time. Children’s talents and interests in design and technology are fostered and developed by providing further challenges and opportunities for personal progression such as school competitions and Family Group projects involving familiar environments of home,school and school grounds, playground and the local park where children can take on different roles within a small group or work individually. Enterprise Week provides a fundraising aspirational design project with the common aim of profit, in order to foster the need to investigate and follow a design brief, designing and making a quality product for sale, completing design booklets and evaluating the successfulness.
In order to expose our children to the world of design in context we run an Aspirations Project where visitors are invited in from the workplace such as engineers and architects to explain, inspire and expose our children to a wider experience of working environments and possibilities.
As one of our four key experiences, the children are exposed to Factory School in UKS2 where they encounter what it is like to complete workshop challenges in an industrial environment in the locality e.g. Nissan in order to inform the children of employment opportunities. We provide opportunities for the other key experiences: Forest School, Coastal School and Farm School which allow us to give the design and technology challenges a real meaningful context for the children in an increasingly familiar environment which they will encounter and re-visit allowing experiences to progress, develop and provide challenge.
We measure the impact of our design and technology curriculum with various formative methods of assessment including self and peer assessment following the design processes. Children appraise, evaluate and suggest constructive developments for their own work and that of their peers. Evidence of children’s work can be found as pieces of work and photos in books as well as on display. The design and technology coordinator monitors the teaching and evidence of design and technology through observations and work and planning scrutinies. We use our Design and Technology Passport to provide pre teaching, revisit and revise and prior learning and assess how the children have retained their learning.
As well as assessing the skills, knowledge and understanding that children have developed in the subject, we also consider their level of enjoyment and engagement. This enables us to identify the children for whom design is their talent. We endeavour to provide guidance and further opportunities to explore their talents and interest in this subject with extracurricular activities, community events and competitions in our region.