It is our intention that our Design & Technology curriculum offer is uniquely tailored to the needs of our pupils. Our aim is to deliver Design & Technology through lessons that are meaningful and in context with children’s learning and interests. The curriculum is driven by possibilities, diversity and community, within which we intend to provide opportunities to discover how Design & Technology has met the needs and wants of consumers in the past and today and to consider those of the future.
Opportunities to engage with the community - taking children on visits and meeting employees such as engineers, designers and chefs - are intended to enrich learning, develop cultural capital and increase children’s awareness of careers and developments linked to Design & Technology.
Design & Technology provides opportunities to appreciate the diverse and changing needs and wants within society. Through evaluating products, materials and processes children are introduced to ‘Philosophy for Children’ within which they discuss and respect diverse views and develop concepts such as equality, care, sustainability and fairness.
The curriculum intent is to build and revisit skills and knowledge in Design & Technology within the areas of Planning & Communication and Making & Evaluating Processes & Products. The design of our curriculum intends cover the breadth of learning set out in the National Curriculum which incorporates: food & cooking, textiles, mechanisms, materials and construction. Within Design & Technology our intention is to draw on knowledge from other areas of learning including Maths, English and Computing and to provide a meaningful context in which to embed and apply cross curricular skills.
The Design & Technology curriculum intends to equip children with the necessary confidence, attitude, skills and knowledge to become successful, reflective designers and makers of products within the classroom and as future successful, innovative and enterprising citizens.
At Abbey Gates we believe that nothing has been learnt until it is in the long-term memory and that memory is the residue of thought. Planning for Design & Technology is a varied process, encompassing individual lessons, termly projects, out of school visits as well as workshops and additional input from external providers. As children engage with Design & Technology they develop skills and understanding in Designing, Making and Evaluating and increase their Technical Skills and Knowledge. Within the curriculum is the provision for teaching ‘Cooking & Nutrition’.
Create, Discover & Explore
Within our curriculum children are introduced to ‘CREATE’, ‘DISCOVER’ and ‘EXPLORE’ projects. The projects unfold through careful consideration of a ‘BIG QUESTION’. This is a focused opportunity for our children to learn to express and respect opinions, develop values and apply skills and knowledge in Design & Technology within a range of contexts.
Creative planning inspires and enthuses children to critically evaluate products and processes. They recognise the value in taking risks and become successful problem solvers to effectively design make and evaluate products.
Throughout the projects, children are exposed to rich vocabulary within meaningful contexts. Design & Technology is creatively linked with subjects including History, Art & Design, Music and supports the development of skills in Reading, Computing, Maths and Science. The projects add depth and rigour to learning and impact on the acquisition of cultural capital through enrichment opportunities including studies of inventors, educational visits out of school and visitors into school.
An example of one of our ‘Discovery’ big questions, ‘What does it take to conquer?’ which acts a catalyst for children to discuss and research the Vikings. They focus on the invention of longboats which initiates critical thinking and realisation of how boats were designed and built for purpose. The children have opportunities for applying creativity in designing boats, making mock-ups, applying skills, and critically evaluating their designs. These subject specific skills are then applied to other Design & Technology projects across the course of the academic year looking at the present and then future products.
Within our EYFS we foster the Characteristics for Learning (exploration, active learning, and critical thinking) and provide opportunities for Expressive Art and Design, and Understanding the World which equips our youngest children with the attitudes and experiences on which our curriculum for Design & Technology is built.
The breadth of our curriculum inspires, equips and motivates children to engage with Design & Technology. They become ‘Designers’ working individually and collaboratively; designing, making and evaluating products. As part of our projects, children work with food and learn to cook. They learn the principles of nutrition and healthy eating. They develop a knowledge of where food comes from and discuss values, fairness, sustainability and ethics when making choices and evaluating products.
Enterprise projects provide ‘real life’ opportunities for children to apply creativity to design and make products for a purpose. They apply skills and knowledge in Design & Technology and draw skills from other domains including Maths, Science, Art & Design, Oracy and English.
The impact of our Design & Technology offer is measured through our comprehensive monitoring cycle, which includes book looks, digital evidence, learning walks, pupil voice, planning scrutiny and curriculum intent reviews. Once reviewed the subject leader will formulate an action plan for improvement.
We assess and track Design & Technology against Benchmark Standards in each phase. In assessing, we are looking for sustained mastery, greater depth, inspired learners and children who are fulfilling their potential.
The intended impact of our Design & Technology curriculum offer is outlined below:
- Children can articulate and explain what Design & Technology is.
- Children demonstrate significant levels of originality and willingness to take creative risks to produce innovative ideas and prototypes.
- Children have an excellent attitude to learning and independent working.
- Children can use time effectively and work constructively and productively with others.
- Children can carry out research, show initiative and ask questions to develop an
- exceptionally detailed knowledge of user’s needs.
- Children can act as responsible designers and makers, working ethically, using finite materials carefully and working safely.
- Children have a thorough knowledge of which tools, equipment and materials to use to make their products.
- Children have the ability to apply knowledge in Maths and English.
- Children can manage risks exceptionally well to manufacture products safely and hygienically.
- Children have a passion for the subject and knowledge of, up-to-date technological innovations