DESIGN & TECHNOLOGY
"Design is not just what something looks and feels like, design is how it works" - Steve Jobs
Design and Technology (DT) is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. At Prince Albert School, we encourage our pupils to think and creatively solve problems, both as individuals and as members of a team. It is our intention to provide pupils with the opportunity to think of their own solutions and design briefs, allowing them to think creatively and develop the skills which enable them to put their ideas into practice. Pupils will have the confidence to make mistakes and will be able to evaluate the products they have created. DT will allow our pupils to put their learning from other areas of the curriculum into practice and they will work to enhance and deepen their understanding of these areas, including mathematics, computing, science and art.
Through the DT curriculum, our pupils will be inspired by diverse engineers, designers, chefs and architects to enable them to create a range of structures, mechanisms, textiles, electrical systems and food products with a real-life purpose. We want them to have no limits to their ambitions. Our pupils will learn about cooking, food and nutrition, ensuring that they acquire the fundamental life skills in order to be able to feed themselves healthily and independently, whilst learning about where food comes from, therefore making connections with their geographical and scientific knowledge.
At Prince Albert School, we want to prepare our pupils with the opportunities and skills they will need to be successful in this subject in later life and unlock their potential to be the designers and innovators of tomorrow
IMPLEMENTATION LONG TERM OVERVIEW
DT is taught in every year group, once per week during the second half of each term. At Prince Albert School, our units are designed based on guidance from the Design and Technology Association, with a focus on food and nutrition, mechanisms, structures, textiles and electrical systems. Key skills and knowledge have been carefully mapped across the school to ensure that learning is sequential and progressive.
Each child has a DT book. Pupils use this to research products, develop design ideas and initial sketches, and showcase learned skills, technical knowledge and vocabulary, final designs, and evaluations.
Through a variety of creative and practical activities, we teach the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an interactive process of designing and making. The pupils design and create a range of products that consider function and purpose. All units follow the investigate, design, focussed tasks, make and evaluate cycle. Each lesson starts with retrieval and teachers make explicit links between skills and knowledge that have been taught in previous years.
Our pupils’ journey into DT begins in Reception where there is a continuous provision of design and technology opportunities, allowing pupils to explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques. Pupils are encouraged to develop their making skills whilst handling appropriate tools and construction materials safely and with increasing control. Pupils will also begin to develop an awareness of design and technology products within their daily lives and how things work e.g. pressing a button, pulling a lever.
Our pupils in KS1, further develop their DT knowledge, skills and understanding, particularly in their use of materials and tools. As pupils move into KS2, they use increasingly complex design briefs, skills, tools and range of materials in their work. They are also introduced to the use of control and technology in design and learn to evaluate their own and others’ products against a design brief or existing product.
In order to enhance our provision further, we have made links with external organisations such as Think Tank who provide us with trips, resources and project ideas. We are also involved in a project with Primary Engineer and our subject leader receives training through the Design Technology Association. All staff have received training to develop their subject knowledge of DT and additional to this have access to subject specific training as part of our National College subscription
Assessment of children's learning in DT takes the form of ongoing monitoring of pupil's understanding, knowledge and skills using key questioning skills built into lessons by the class teacher. Summative assessment is conducted termly by class teachers across each year group and is aimed at targeting next steps in learning as well as informing teachers/leaders of progress and skills/knowledge still to be embedded. At Prince Albert School, our pupils have the ability to act as responsible designers and makers, working ethically, using a range of materials carefully and working safely. Our pupils have a thorough knowledge of which tools, equipment and materials to use to make their products and they have the skills to use them. They have the confidence and knowledge to design their own products and make mistakes. Our pupils talk enthusiastically about their DT lessons and enjoy this subject. The skills and attributes they develop will benefit them beyond school and into adulthood: the ability to use time efficiently, work with others productively, show initiative, independence, resilience and manage risks effectively.