Design and Technology
Key Stage Three
In Design and Technology pupils combine practical and technological skills with creative thinking to design and make products and systems that meet human needs. They learn to use current technologies and consider the impact of future technological developments. They learn to think creatively and intervene to improve the quality of life, solving problems as individuals and members of a team.
Key Stage Four
In KS4, pupils can choose the specialist subject area from the following options: Design & Technology, Engineering and NCFE Level 2 Certificate in Food and Cookery.
During the two year GCSE course, pupils can expect to study the major aspects of their chosen option. This may include theory lessons, mini projects and entering national design competitions. These allow them to develop the skills needed for them to commence their controlled assessment (NEA) projects.
Controlled assessment projects carry 50% of the final GCSE grade. It will consist of a design brief – set by the exam board in June of Year 10. Pupils are expected to analyse, research and develop a solution before manufacturing the final product or Prototype.
Product Design - The James Dyson Foundation
Year Ten Product Design pupils gained access to the James Dyson Foundation Education Box. This resource has been developed by the foundation to put real examples of engineering into the hands of teenagers. ‘We want to excite students about design engineering – to understand that the thought, building and breaking that goes into the creation of everyday products can be fascinating and fun.’
Pupils were each given examples of Dysons’ products with a set of assembly instructions and a torx screwdriver. The aim of the activity was for pupils to disassemble and then reassemble (testing that the product did work at the end) sections of the latest vacuum cleaner so that they could analysis in depth, each aspect of the engineering.
This insight will help pupils as they start to develop their own final designs for their Product Design coursework later in the year.