Design and Technology is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. Design and Technology encourages children to learn to think and intervene creatively to solve problems both as individuals and as members of a team. At Ordsall Primary, we encourage children to use their creativity and imagination, to design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values.
The curriculum that we follow in Design Technology is the National Curriculum. From this, the design of our curriculum for Design and Technology ensures that it meets the expectations set out for Key Stages 1 and 2.
The vision for the intent of the Design and Technology curriculum aligns with the schools’ overall intent statement because we provide our children with exciting, engaging and broad learning experience to build upon skills and knowledge. Through doing this we aim to address potential barriers to learning through first hand and relevant experiences that will prepare the children for life in modern Britain and their own future.
The school’s design and technology curriculum is rooted in the consensus of the school’s leaders about the knowledge and skills that pupils need in order to take advantage of opportunities, responsibilities and experiences in later life. Links with ‘real life’ are used regularly to give learning purpose and our contextualised learning allows our children to explore the knowledge and cultural capital they need in order to succeed in life.
Through a variety of creative and practical activities, we teach the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an iterative process of designing and making. The children work in a range of relevant contexts (for example home, school, leisure, culture, enterprise, industry and the wider environment). When working in Design and Technology, the children are taught four strands:
Design Technology at Ordsall Primary School is taught through our contextualised learning plans. Along with designing and making their own products, pupils have the opportunity for other experiences that enrich and stimulate their learning, such as, survival workshops with den building, working with a chocolatier and many forms of cookery from whole class, enrichment sessions and after school clubs, all of which give greater emphasise to links to the wider world.
These opportunities provide a context for the children’s work in Design and Technology; that they learn about real life structures and the purpose of specific examples. Our curriculum plans clearly reference the connections across subjects including Science, Computing and Personal Social Health Education when the children’s learning is set in a context such as the Enterprise Fair. Through this approach, we aim to allow our children to be able to transfer key knowledge to long-term memory and apply it fluently in a range of contexts.
Key skills and key knowledge for Design and Technology have been “mapped” across the school. These long-term plans detail the learning that is planned so that new knowledge and skills build on what has been taught before and builds towards clearly defined end points or “milestones”. The milestones for the end of each term and each year ensure progression between year groups so that learning is built upon across a sequence of lessons and across the key stages and year groups. This can be as a discrete lesson focussed on a particular skill, as a block of lessons over a number of consecutive days, or as a sequence of lessons across a number of weeks, which builds systematically on prior learning. In this way, the teaching staff are aware of what pupils should ‘know’ by the end of each term, year and key stage.
It is our intention that the Design and Technology curriculum at Ordsall Primary School will be both stimulating and motivating in order to capture the children’s curiosity and fuel their motivation to learn. Learning, Playing and Growing Together in Design and Technology provides the children at Ordsall Primary School with exciting learning opportunities so that they can enjoy acquiring and developing their skills, understanding and key knowledge so that they can commit it to long-term memory and apply it fluently in a range of contexts.
How do we measure the impact of our work in Design Technology?
At Ordsall Primary School we measure the impact of our work in Design Technology in a variety of ways. The school uses its knowledge and vocabulary progression map for Design Technology to compare the work that the children are doing with key points on the map. This allows the staff to assess where the children are, and check which elements are evident from the progression on the maps. In Design Technology this is done by observing the children completing or starting their work, through pupil discussion (when the children are asked about their work) the work in the children's books and on display and a scrutiny of social media posts about Design Technology. This assessment process, used within Design Technology, enables the school to evaluate the progress that the children are making, inform future work, measure the impact of what we teach and monitor specific groups. The process is tied together through the records of achievement at the end of the year that are shared with parents and carers.
If you would like to see some of the work that we do in Design and Technology please see our Twitter feed @Ordsallschool or our website, which are both used to share the work that we do with parents and carers, the local community and the wider community of Bassetlaw, Nottinghamshire, the region and the United Kingdom.
If you would like to know more about the Design and Technology curriculum at Ordsall Primary School please see the documents below. If you have any questions about the work we do in Design and Technology please contact the Design and Technology Subject Leader at the school.