Design and Technology Curriculum Aims & Rationale
The national curriculum for design and technology aims to ensure that all pupils:
At Sacred Heart RC School the intention is to prepare children for an ever changing world by giving them a range of transferable skills. Our design and technology curriculum is integral to this, encouraging children to become creative problem-solvers and to work independently and as part of an effective team. Through the study of design and technology, children combine practical skills with an understanding of aesthetic, historical, social and environmental problems, in order to design and make a product. Learning from past designs, innovating and evaluating are all key components of the design process and allow children to adapt and improve their product – key skills which they need throughout their life. Design and Technology helps all children to become discriminating and informed consumers and potential innovators. Our curriculum aims to equip pupils with practical skills in woodwork, electronics, mechanics and textiles so that children can develop independence in their every day life, supporting their development as independent and self-sufficient individuals.
Teaching children about nutrition, healthy life styles and cooking is of great importance and particular relevance in a climate of growing obesity. For this reason, pupils will study a food and nutrition unit every year. By instilling a love of cooking in pupils, we will further foster independence, creativity and an understanding of the importance of a healthy lifestyle. Learning how to cook is a crucial life skill that enables pupils to feed themselves and others affordably and well, now and in later life.
At Sacred Heart Primary School our design and technology curriculum is built around essential knowledge, and key skills and is taught as a discrete subject within a thematic curriculum. Skills are broken down into yearly outcomes and show clear continuity and progress. All teaching of design and technology follows the design, make and evaluate cycle and design and technology projects all have a design purpose with a relevant context. In KS1 pupils are taught how to design, make and evaluate, but also to gain specific technical knowledge and skills such as using mechanisms (levers, slides, wheels) and sewing techniques. In KS2 pupils will also design, make and evaluate products, but their technical knowledge and skills will develop and build on existing skills to strengthen and reinforce more complex structures, use mechanical systems in their products (for example, gears, pulleys, cams, levers and linkages), understand and use electrical systems in their products and apply their understanding of computing to design, program and control their products.
Cooking and nutrition in KS1 focuses on the basic principles of a healthy, varied diet. Children learn to prepare and cook predominately savoury dishes, learning safe cutting techniques and the importance of food hygiene. In KS2 pupils further build upon the skills they learnt in KS1, designing, making and evaluating more complex dishes and learning about seasonality. Children are given plenty of opportunity to apply the cooking skills they’ve learned in design and technology in other subjects, for example creating fruit skewers in P.E. and a Christmas Dinner for the homeless shelter as part of our social action work.
Children will develop a range of transferable skills through their Design and Technology lessons and as a result will become more creative, responsible and confident individuals. Through carefully planned and implemented learning activities the pupils develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world. They gain a firm foundation of knowledge and skills to see them equipped to take on further learning when they leave Key Stage 2.