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Design & Technology

Curriculum Leader:

Mrs S Arrowsmith

Department Introduction:

Welcome to Design & Technology! The national curriculum for D&T aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world
  • 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 learn how to cook.

Department Aims:

What’s good about Design & Technology?


In D&T we aim to adhere to this and provide opportunities for students to engage in activities that are challenging, relevant and motivating. Students work in a variety of contexts to draw upon the local community and the wider-world when identifying needs and opportunities. Evaluation of past and present design and technology, the users and effects, aid students in becoming discriminating users and innovative designers themselves.


What’s good about Design & Technology at WGHS?


We aim to provide a range of starting points for research and exploration in several disciplines, including Food and Nutrition, Product Design and Fibres and Fabrics. We have also expanded our capabilities through modernising our curriculum and updating facilities and access to digital technologies. We are well equipped to work with a number of materials and have a specialist Food preparation room as well as a textiles area and a workshop. All staff – teaching and technicians – are passionate about working with materials and equipment and how to aid young people’s safe working and knowledge of all aspects of D&T. We encourage curiosity and the appreciation of design evolution through our handling collections.

Key Stage 3:

Design and Technology (D&T) is the inspiring, rigorous and practical subject which prepares all young people to live and work in the designed and made world. Practical 'design and make' challenges are set, drawing on traditional handcraft methods as well as developing CAD and CAM skills. The range of design briefs vary to encourage dexterity and skill in practical work using a number of tools and equipment. Students are taught core knowledge and respond to questions by applying both their theoretical and practical understanding. Food modules develop confidence and safety in the kitchen alongside knowledge of dietary requirements and the science behind processes and reactions.

Key Stage 4:

Students may currently study Design & Technology or Food Preparation and Nutrition. There is emphasis on increasingly refined practical designing and making alongside technical aspects of the disciplines and sustainability. Both courses work towards invention and design innovation.


What will I study at GCSE?


In FP&N, students will focus on practical cooking skills to ensure students develop a thorough understanding of nutrition, food provenance and the working characteristics of food materials. In D&T students will learn about core principles and how to work with fabrics, timbers, polymers, graphics, smart materials and CAD/CAM as well as have the opportunity to chose a specialist material area. Students design and make prototypes that solve real and relevant problems, preparing our learners to become critical and creative designers, engineers and consumers of the future. Increasing knowledge and understanding is applied to externally set questions in the form of a written examination.

Both courses feature units of controlled assessment and written examinations.


How is Design & Technology GCSE assessed?


All pupils will be entered for Design & Technology (OCR).

The NEA will be started in June of Year 10 (worth 60% of the overall grade).

The expectation is that pupils will sit the examination in June of Year 11.


How is Food Preparation & Nutrition GCSE assessed?


All pupils will be entered for FP&N (AQA).

There are 2 NEA components (worth 50% of the overall grade)

The expectation is that pupils will sit the examination in June of Year 11.

Key Stage 5:

Extra-Curricular Activities:

The Design and Technology department hosts a range of activities to inform student learning and foster an enthusiasm for the various disciplines. These have included visiting chefs, Baking Competitions, visits to a local fruit farm, restaurants and the Design Museum in London. We have had a successful kitchen garden group and also an embroidery club who have exhibited their collective work in an exhibition. Lunchtime and after school sessions have helped to develop a range of Textiles skills whilst Food, Preparation & Nutrition has supported and informed a successful enrichment program for 6thform and regularly contributes to the House Winter Games event.

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