Design and Technology
At Shay Lane Primary School, we view design and technology to be an inspiring, cooperative and expressive subject. The teaching of design and technology encourages children to think independently prior to teacher input, solve problems both as individuals and as team members and intervene creatively to fundamentally solve these challenging obstacles.
Educators in our school encourage children to use their imagination and creativity to design and make products that solve real and relevant problems in daily life and the wider world, and in a variety of contexts. We intend to inspire children through engaging projects that allow pupils to consider their own and others’ needs, wants and values. The key principles of design and technology are encouraged through other subjects such as English, mathematics, science, computing and art and design to develop this technical knowledge further and apply it where necessary.
The children are provided with opportunities to reflect upon and critically evaluate past and present design and technology, its uses and its effectiveness. The children then become inspired innovators and risk-takers, themselves, and reflect upon and evaluate their own products and inventions to a greater extent.
* Policy Document *
Shay Lane Primary School is a proud member of The Design and Technology Association (DATA).
Teaching and Learning in KS1 and KS2
We use key elements from the DATA to inform the teaching and learning in our school and have suitably adapted this flexible scheme of learning to meet the needs of our pupils. We have applied elements of the ‘Projects on a Page’ national scheme of work and our own expertise to ensure long, medium and short term planning is progressive and cohesive across the EYFS and all other year groups.
Projects are taught in blocks which allows for deeper learning in which teachers can focus on teaching and developing DT skills, allowing children time to develop their ideas and techniques. ‘Projects on a Page’ allows for more flexibility when delivering a D&T project - in discussion with the children in our school, we decide which products we will design and make, who the products will be for and what their purpose is. Our adaptations from this scheme of learning have enabled and embedded cross-curricular links and links with wider experiences in our school.
Teachers at Shay Lane Primary School strive to ensure pupils have the required knowledge, skills and understanding to be innovative designers. We ensure our teachers have the necessary knowledge and skills to deliver high quality D&T sessions through our progressive curriculum and through bespoke subject CPD. Class teachers make effective use of assessment to ensure pupils are making expected progress. When planning and teaching for, and assessing our pupils, we follow the DATA Essentials to delivering an effective D&T project. These are in place in teachers' planning to ensure children’s learning is genuinely design and technological in nature. They are consistent with the National Curriculum requirements and are applied whenever children are designing and making products.
The D&T Essentials are User; Purpose; Innovation; Authenticity; Functionality and Design Decisions. By incorporating the six D&T Essentials, children should have a clear idea of who they are designing and making products for, considering their needs, wants, interests or preferences. Pupils should know what the products they design and make are for and children should design and make products that function in some way to be successful. When designing and making, pupils need opportunities to make informed decisions such as selecting materials, components and techniques and deciding what form the products will take, how they will work, what task they will perform and who they are for, as well as some scope to be original with their thinking. Lastly, children should design and make products that are believable, real and meaningful to themselves.
Building on current good practice, each Project Planner includes three types of activity that provide detail on how the programmes of study for design and technology should be taught.
- Investigative and Evaluative Activities (IEAs) – children learn from a broad range of existing products and find out about D&T in the wider world;
- Focused Tasks (FTs) – pupils are taught specific technical knowledge, designing skills and making skills;
- Design, Make and Evaluate Assignment (DMEA) – children create functional products with users and purposes in mind.
Through IEAs and FTs children are equipped with the knowledge, understanding and skills to engage successfully and with increasing independence in a Design, Make and Evaluate Assignment. IEAs and FTs do not have to be followed in sequence; therefore, we dip in and out of these activities to meet the needs of our children.
In the EYFS, the early learning goals for Expressive Arts and Design indicate what children should know, understand and be able to do by the end of the reception year. Shay Lane Primary School ensures the delivery of high-quality D&T experiences and activities, enabling children to ‘safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function’ and ‘use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes’. D&T also makes an important contribution to young children’s learning across the remaining six areas of the EYFS framework, including Understanding the World, Physical Development, Literacy, Mathematics, Personal, Social and Emotional Development, and Communication and Language. The D&T knowledge, understanding and problem- solving skills feed into whole class teaching and learning though an enabling EY environment.
For further information, please see our whole school progression document.
After School Club
The renewed plans for the DT curriculum will be implemented in all classes from September 2022. The intended outcomes for each year group are clear from our detailed planning.
We will measure children’s performance in DT against these outcomes as described under ‘implementation’ and report accordingly to governors.
Design Technology will continue to be monitored by the subject leader throughout the year in the form of book monitoring, conversations with pupils, environment walks and looking at outcomes to establish the impact of the teaching taking place. This will inform the Design and Technology subject leader of any further areas for curriculum development, pupil support and/or training requirements for staff.
Children in Foundation Stage are assessed within Expressive Arts and Design, as well as other areas of learning, and their progress is tracked termly. Age related expectation levels are reported to parents at the end of the Nursery and Reception year.
Our overall aim is that children will have clear enjoyment and confidence in Design and Technology that they will then apply to other areas of the curriculum. Through carefully planned activities, pupils should develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world. They are expected to gain a firm foundation of knowledge and skills to see them equipped to take on further learning in High School.