Design and Technology


C Coates- Senior Teacher/Head of Faculty

K Regan-Head of Graphics/Teacher of Textiles

C Blandford- Teacher of Resistant Materials and Graphics

R Telfer- Teacher of Graphics

W O’Carroll- Teacher of Food, Textiles and Child Development

H Millington-Teacher of Graphics and Resistant Materials

L Walker- Teacher of Food

S Dowe- Teacher of Food and Technical support

S Allen- Technical support in Graphics and Resistant Materials

B Johnson-Technical support in Textiles.

J Clewes- Assistant Teacher supporting across the Faculty.

Aims of the subject:

“Design and Technology prepares students to participate in tomorrow’s rapidly changing technologies. They learn to think and intervene creatively to improve quality of life. The subject calls for students to become autonomous and creative problem solvers, as individuals and members of a team. They must look for needs, wants and opportunities and respond to them by developing a range of ideas and making products and systems. They combine practical skills with an understanding of aesthetics, social and environmental issues, function and industrial practices. As they do so, they reflect on and evaluate present and past design technology, its uses and effects. Through design and technology, all students can become discriminating and informed users of products, and become innovators.”

The proposals for the new design and technology curriculum ensure that pupils will leave school with real life practical skills such as being able to wire a plug, cook a family meal, build flat pack furniture and make alterations to clothing.

Within the curriculum, students learn:

To teach the technical skills and creative understanding that will prepare the students to live and work in a highly technological society on leaving school.
• To encourage a questioning mind, perseverance, and the careful management of time and resources and a sense of responsibility when putting theory into action.
• To encourage both the intellectual and creative abilities that will enable students to complete a design project from its conception to its conclusion.
• To relate this experience to commerce and industry and to understand how design and technology play a large part in our lives.
• To develop a range of designing and making skills whilst reflecting on current technologies and the history of design.
• To stimulate the development of a range of communication skills which are central to design, making, evaluation and problem-solving.
• To promote the development of the curiosity, enquiry, initiative, ingenuity, resourcefulness and technological awareness.
• To teach students to choose and use the correct tools and equipment safely and to increase their confidence

when faced with the practicalities of employing a tool with which they are not familiar.
• To teach how to measure and cut correctly a wide range of resistant and semi-resistant materials.
• To teach manipulative skills and be encouraged to develop a three-dimensional understanding.
• To stimulate the exercising of value judgments of an aesthetic, technical, economic and moral nature.

The departmental approach to Design and Technology is essentially based on the concept of “Technology for all” and aims to challenge students to design and make creative products in four main areas; Food, Graphics, Resistant Materials and Textiles.

Key Stage 3
Within Key Stage 3 Design and Technology we operate a rotation system that allows groups of students to move within the different areas of the faculty on a 9 week rotation. Students will complete work that covers all strands of Design and Technology including: Textiles, Resistant Materials, Graphics and Food Technology. The students move between staff in the faculty who have different skills and areas of expertise. This allows students to have the best possible teaching and learning experience in each distinct area of the faculty. Each student will leave Key Stage 3 Design and Technology with a broad range of knowledge and expertise e.g. Drawing, Sketching, Workshop practice, use of tools and machinery, Computer Aided Design, Computer Aided Manufacture, ICT, Teamwork, etc. All student progress will be tracked over their various KS3 rotations. The results from which will be used to guide their choices when selecting their options at the end of KS3.

Key Stage 4
Design and Technology is a popular subject at GCSE, and pupils select a specific material area to focus their study. These are taught within specialist workshop environments that embrace traditional and modern tools, machines and processes. Students will work with a variety of materials to design, manufacture, test and evaluate the products of tomorrow, allowing them to develop practical ability as well as their problem solving skills. Investigating, planning and preparing work will account for approximately 60 % of the students’ time and will cover the social and environmental aspects of Design and Technology within society and the impact that materials and manufacturing has upon their lives. Students will use ICT and Computer Aided Design and Manufacture to both develop and enhance their work within the subject.

Design and Technology allows students:

To develop their creativity, which enables them to be inspired, moved and challenged by the pursuit of better design solutions.
To be independent learners, and develop higher order thinking skills such as analytical thinking which feed into many other subject areas as a transferable skill.

To become discriminative users of products within a consumerist society

Subjects offered:

GCSE Graphics
Graphic Products encourages students to critically analyses existing products and generate exciting and innovative design solutions.  Students have the opportunity to work with a range of tools, technologies and equipment to produce professional outcomes.

GCSE Textiles
Students develop a working knowledge of textiles materials and components appropriate to modeling, prototyping and manufacturing. Students are also taught how to analyse textile products and processes. They consider how Design and Technology affects the manufacturer, user and environment, and the importance of health and safety issues. Pupils learn how to make garments with a professional finish and utilize their knowledge and understanding of new technologies and current environmental issues to generate innovative design solutions.

GCSE Food Technology
Students utilize their knowledge and understanding of the function of ingredients, processes and target consumers, to model and develop new and exciting products that are suitable for purpose. The broad programme of study allows pupils to explore a range of techniques and processes to produce technically demanding products with a professional quality of finish.

GCSE Resistant Materials
This qualification allows students a much more hands on approach to Design and Technology. Learning involves a substantial amount of practical experience rather than just taught theory lessons. Projects range from bird feeders, PlayStation stands, to furniture and allow the students to engage with tools and materials that prepare them for further education or careers in joinery, carpentry, automotive design or construction.

GCSE Child Development
Students are given the opportunity to study Child Development as an option at Key Stage 4. The qualification allows students to understand:
• Family and parenting
• Preparation for pregnancy and birth
• Physical development
• Nutrition and health
• Intellectual, social and emotional developments
• Community support

We have a well-equipped department which responds to the ever changing demands of the subject. Staff as designers and makers, are constantly updating their use of equipment, tools and processes as their professional practice feeds into their everyday teaching.  The majority of materials (with the exception of food) are provided in lessons.

Within classes students are taught individually, in groups or as a class when appropriate. It is recognised that through group work co-operation, effective learning and understanding are promoted; but to ensure differentiation, matching and assessment children may work individually or as a class.

Extra -Curricular:

Students are encouraged to attend enrichment opportunities within the department. In KS3 we offer a variety of clubs with a focus on developing skills, knowledge and understanding alongside building on student’s enjoyment of the subject. Opportunities include Food and High attainers clubs in KS3 as well as the chance to attend homework club. Sustainability is a key feature of the Design Technology curriculum with opportunities for students to demonstrate their innovation and creativity within the “Eco” project. This involves students working with outside organisations and agencies and co-operatively with other curriculum areas.

In KS4 links have been established with Birmingham college of Food through which our students have worked alongside a trainee Chef. Resistant Materials students are engaging with a “live” project, in conjunction with “The Think Tank” at Millennium point which will enable them to extend their learning outside the classroom. Numerous opportunities exist for KS4 enrichment, before school, during lunchtime and after school with the aim of maximising success in coursework and examination performance.  Over the last year students have achieved success in various competitions, competing against schools nationally and regionally.