Design and technology

Aims of the curriculum

Key Stage 3 design and technology aims to prepare students for living and working in an ever-changing world by being adaptable and aware of the impact of their decision making on the environment. To enable pupils to develop their design and technology capability through combining their designing and making skills with knowledge and understanding in order to design and make products.

The Key Stage 3 design and technology curriculum gives the pupils the opportunity to build sound knowledge and understanding of the subject through a number of tasks which enables them to work through a variety of design contexts whilst gaining practical experience using a range of materials. In Year 7 pupils are given the opportunity to learn and develop practical skills and knowledge of materials in four media areas. The pupils are then encouraged to apply the processes taught in focused tasks to mini projects. In Year 8 pupils develop further skills in each of the four media areas to produce more imaginative practical answers to the problems and design briefs set.

Curriculum overview

Year 7

Food technology
  • Pupils are introduced to Food Technology basics through focused tasks aimed at learning and understanding the importance of hygiene and safety in a working kitchen and healthy eating.
  • This is coupled with understanding and application of the design process to be able to design and make food products under a wide range of contexts.
  • Pupils also learn basic food preparation skills and methods throughout the module.
Graphic products
  • Pupils develop knowledge and understanding of the design process and skills in design generation through the theme of Corporate Identity and CAD.
  • The skills focus is biased towards product analysis and creativity, application of research, developing and creating quality products.
Resistant materials
  • Pupils complete a practical project where they explore the key resistant materials wood, plastic and metal.
  • The projects follow the design process and help develop knowledge and understanding of these materials and manufacturing processes.
  • Pupils experience key wood and metalwork skills as well as studying how to design for a purpose.
 Textiles
  • Pupils develop their knowledge of textiles and the use of these to manufacture products for a need.
  • Pupils develop a range of hand skills to be able to manufacture products using fabrics and other materials.

Year 8

Food technology
  • Pupils will develop their key skills further, building on their existing knowledge gained in Year 7.
  • This is achieved by introducing new key culinary skills with a greater emphasis on producing quality outcomes whilst developing their ability to make educated decisions about food choices and their impact on the environment.
Graphic products
  • Building on pupils’ experience of Graphic Products, Pupils study a business graphics project which aims to develop the knowledge gained earlier in the Key Stage through the design and development of a corporate identity.
  • The project allows pupils to practice key Design and Technology skills, such as creativity, modelling and CAD work, which will act as a bridge between Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4.
Resistant materials
  • In Year 8 pupils build upon the knowledge gained in Year 7 through the completion of a DMA.
  • The aim of the topic is to design and manufacture a passive amplifier.
  • The pupils concentrate on the core practical skills of design and technology along with the supporting design process and modern manufacturing techniques.
 Textiles
  • Pupils develop their knowledge of textiles and the use of these to manufacture products for a need.
  • Pupils develop a range of hand and machine skills to be able to manufacture products using fabrics and other materials.

Year 9

Food technology
  • Pupils will develop their key skills further, building on their existing knowledge gained in Year 8.
  • Pupils complete a section of the first unit towards the VCERT qualification covering a wide range of practical outcomes.
  • This enables pupils to be well equipped for both life and if they wish to take the subject through to Key Stage 4
Graphic products
  • Building on pupils’ experience of Graphic Products, Pupils study a cinema centred project which aims to develop the knowledge gained earlier in the Key Stage. This project directly supports the delivery of the Technical Award in visual Communication that can be opted for at KS4
  • The project allows pupils to practice key Design and Technology skills, such as creativity, modelling and CAD work, which will act as a bridge between Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4.
  • Pupils also study the use of programmable circuits and electronics as a component of the graphics section.
Resistant materials
  • In Year 9 pupils build upon the knowledge gained in Year 7 through the completion of a DMA.
  • The aim of the topic is to design and manufacture an Innovative Clock.
  • Pupils follow the whole design process at this stage and develop extensive skills in modelling, testing and problem solving to support KS4 courses.
  • The pupils concentrate on the core practical skills of design and technology along with the supporting design process and modern manufacturing techniques.

 

Teaching methods and student organisation

The school curriculum pathways are organised into Thomas and More. Throughout Key Stage 3, students are taught twice a week for two single hour lessons, within these pathways, in mixed ability classes, supported and encouraged through differentiated tasks. Pupil will complete all tasks in all media areas on a rotational basis throughout the Key Stage. Lessons are usually divided between practical and theory based tasks.

Progression after Key Stage 3

At the end of Key Stage 3 pupils opt to study one media in more detail. The students’ enjoyment of design and technology is shown through its popularity by the number of students opting for it at Key Stage 4. It has been the most prevalent subject at Key Stage 4 after mathematics, English and science. This positive endorsement by students demonstrates the value and importance of design and technology:

  • Technical Award in Materials
  • Technical Award in Fashion
  • Technical Award in Visual Communication
  • VCERT Food and Cookery

All the above courses are GCSE equivalent count towards progress 8 and support progression into A-Level subjects.

Additional classes and extra curricular activities

Pupils are welcome to seek additional assistance with homework tasks during lunchtimes in G42/G44 where there is access to computers and one to one support from staff. ‘Young Chef of the Year’ is an external competition run by the EBP and The Rotary Club, which enables any student to show off their knowledge of healthy eating and their culinary skills. They must also apply their understanding of eating and cooking within a budget, whilst producing a quality meal within 45 minutes. Pupils compete to represent the school at the regional finals. ‘Young Chef of the Year’ usually runs from January through to April. We also offer a STEM club which supports the teaching of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths, and allows pupils to explore the subject further as well as having the opportunity to undertake projects outside the usual school curriculum such as charitable projects and other practical based learning activities.

Useful design and technology websites