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Design Technology

1. Rationale/Introduction

1.1 At Lickhill Primary School, we know that design and technology should enhance learning by preparing pupils to participate in tomorrow’s rapidly changing technologies. They need to learn to think and act creatively to solve problems in order to improve the quality of life. Pupils need to work, both independently and as members of a team, to become resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable citizens. All children will have the opportunity to undertake design and technology throughout their time at Lickhill Primary School. This will be structured as to give a sound basis for further work.

1.2 At Lickhill, we aim to use the National Curriculum, the Design and Technology Association scheme and our local resources to provide a wide range of opportunities to learn about this subject by evaluating, designing and making Something for Somebody for Some purpose. At every opportunity the work we plan for our pupils is linked to a real-life purpose and is usually part of our cross-curriculum learning. At Lickhill we aim to ensure that all pupils meet the requirements of the National Curriculum in the following ways:

  • Develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world. Links in projects are made to programming, electrical systems and Computer aided design.


  • 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 learning how to cook.


  • All linked termly to class subject.                                                                   


2. Aims and Objectives

2.1 Design and technology is a practical subject and we aim to prepare the pupils of Lickhill to participate in tomorrow’s rapidly changing technologies by:

  • Providing opportunities for all the children to design and make quality products.
  • To provide children with the opportunity to explore food and cooking techniques along with healthy eating and environmental issues within food production.
  • To develop design and making skills, knowledge and understanding to the best of each child’s ability; using and selecting a range of tool, materials and components.
  • To become creative problem solvers as individuals and members of a team. 
  • To be able to use computing in conjunction with the Designing and Making process.
  • To develop an ability to criticise constructively and evaluate their own products and those of others.
  • To help the children develop an understanding of the ways people in the past and present have used design to meet their needs.
  • To reflect on and evaluate such techniques, its uses and effects.
  • To prepare the children for living in a multi-cultural society by teaching consideration for other cultures which will be both important and beneficial.

2.2 To achieve our aims we ensure that:

  • The planned activities our children undertake are challenging, motivating, relevant and enjoyable.
  • We give children confidence in their work by providing continual support and encouragement.
  • The children are extended in their work in a way which develops their expertise.
  • The children are provided with the very best resources possible, while constantly reviewing this provision in the light of curriculum changes, development and budget constraints.


3. Strategies/Implementation

3.1 Design and technology lessons:

3.2 Our design and technology lessons are taught by the class teacher in weekly lessons or it may be blocked into larger units. (Totalling approximately 6 hours per term). TAs may take small groups (Max 6 children) for cookery, if required. We use a skills based cross-curricular approach to teaching and learning using objectives taken from the National Curriculum. We teach DT skills discretely and through our curriculum themes, ensuring all children access all areas of the Design Technology Curriculum.

To meet the requirements of the National Curriculum it is essential that each teacher carry out three of the following design and technology activities within an academic year;

- Mechanisms

- Textiles

- Food

- Structures


Units of work are mapped across the year groups to ensure balance and progression.


Each unit delivered must include;

  • Investigating, disassembling and evaluating activities
  • Focused practical tasks
  • A designing and making assignment


Focused practical tasks should be used to teach the correct use of tools and equipment.


Relevant links with art, maths, science and IT should be made in unit plans.


In planning a unit consideration should be made of the following;


  • Developing children’s designing skills, including generating and developing ideas, clarifying their task; creating design proposals, communicating ideas, planning and evaluating;
  • Acquiring and refining the practical skills associated with making, including working with materials and components, tools and processes, for example by planning, measuring and marking out, cutting and shaping, joining and combining, finishing, and evaluating;
  • Application of mathematical skill, for example by measuring to an appropriate number of decimal places, drawing and interpreting tables, graphs and bar charts;
  • Application of ICT skill, for example by making things happen by the use of control, handling information through the use of a database or spread sheet;
  • Application of art skill, for example by investigating texture and colour or recording visual information.


4. Curriculum coverage 

4.1 During the Foundation Stage children will work towards the areas of learning set out in the Early Years Foundation Stage that underpin the curriculum planning for children from birth to five.


During the Foundation Stage children will be encouraged to:


  • Fit things together and take them apart
  • Explore and select materials and equipment
  • Change the shape and arrangement of objects, in a variety of ways, for example  stacking, connecting, stretching, enclosing
  • Experience and experiment with a range of technology with support
  • Use a variety of tools safely
  • Use skills such as cutting, joining, folding and building for a variety of purposes
  • Talk about what works/ does not work and suggest improvements
  • Recognise a problem and suggest ideas for solving it
  • Help to plan the sequence and details of tasks
  • Build and construct with a wide range of objects, selecting appropriate resources, and learn to adapt their work when necessary
  • Select the tools and techniques they need to shape, assemble and join the materials  they are using
  • Find out and identify the uses of everyday technology to support their learning.


4.2 Key Stage One will build on and further develop these skills.


During Key Stage One and Key Stage Two we must ensure that a balance of experiences and materials are delivered and used. In delivering units of work we must look for progression in designing and making skills, and ensure knowledge about processes and techniques is taught.


Progression will be ensured by reference to the schemes of work and by each teacher knowing the content that they are required to teach. Continuity will be ensured by all staff conforming to the agreed mode of working as outlined in this policy.


4.3 The long-term design and technology plan outlines the content to be covered in the subject (this is adapted from the Design and Technology Association scheme.) At Lickhill we plan thematically and incorporate our D and T content around other areas of learning. For medium term planning staff should use the Projects on a Page (Design and Technology Association Publication) which is available in electronic form on the school server or paper form from the D&T co-ordinator’s file. Foundation Stage follows the EYFS curriculum Early Learning Goals.

4.4 Whenever possible D&T will have cross-curricular links to other subjects such as Humanities, Science, Computing etc. Forest School activities will encourage children’s designing and building skills e.g. den building, campfire cookery and use of tools. Recording of work can be in varied forms: written, annotated sketches, cross-sections, diagrams, CAD (computer aided design) digital sound or image, etc.

4.5 Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)  

In the Early Years Foundation Stage at Lickhill, design and technology is an integral part of topic work, relating aspects of the children’s work to the objectives set out in the Early Learning Goals, and Expressive Arts and Design. To facilitate our objectives different teaching styles and methods are used as appropriate. These include small group and individual work.  

4.6 Personal, social and health education (PSHE) and citizenship

Design and technology contributes to the teaching of personal, social and health education and citizenship. We encourage the children to develop a sense of responsibility in following safe procedures when making things. They also learn about health and healthy diets. Their work encourages them to be responsible and to set targets to meet deadlines, and they also learn through their understanding of personal hygiene, how to prevent disease from spreading when working with food.

4.7 Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development

The teaching of design and technology offers opportunities to support the social development of our children through the way we expect them to work with each other in lessons. Our groupings allow children to work together, and give them the chance to discuss their ideas and feelings about their own work and the work of others. Through their collaborative and co-operative work across a range of activities and experiences in design and technology, the children develop respect for the abilities of other children and a better understanding of themselves. They also develop a respect for the environment, for their own health and safety and for that of others. They develop their cultural awareness and understanding, and they learn to appreciate the value of differences and similarities. A variety of experiences teaches them to appreciate that all people are equally important, and that the needs of individuals are not the same as the needs of groups.