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Design and Technology

Design and Technology at Dame Alice Owens school is a dynamic, exciting and enjoyable subject that nurtures innovative thinking and challenges Pupils’ understanding of the designed and made world.

The department firmly believes that students learn best by ‘doing’ and has carefully planned a curriculum that allows students to work with different materials areas so that they can develop a greater appreciation for traditional practices whilst embracing new technologies.

At the heart of our curriculum is a desire to teach creative thinking and provide opportunities for students to become better problem solvers. We hope students will become more insightful consumers and environmentally conscious citizens by making sure they learn about the wider issues associated with designing and manufacturing products.. 

The department has three well equipped workshops and a dedicated CAD/CAM suite. Throughout KS3 students are taught Product Design once a week and they can study Design and Technology at GCSE Level and Product Design at A Level. 

The department offers a wealth of opportunities to study key aspects of Design and Technology outside the classroom. We currently offer an Engineering lunch club and also participate in a number of competitions outside lessons which include Design Ventura, V&A Innovate challenge and the F1 in Schools challenge.

KS3

By working through ‘design and make’ challenges that cover a wide range of different contexts, pupils will explore the needs and requirements of different user groups to solve everyday problems.

Year 7 Projects include designing and making an endangered animal puzzle in the autumn term, a wooden box in the spring term and a mobile charging station in the summer term.

Key topics: Understanding the origins and classification of core materials 

Year 8 Projects include designing and making a bird feeder in the autumn term, a moisture sensor in the spring term and learning about structures and paper engineering in the summer term.

Key topics: Building of origins and classification of materials, we focus on material working properties of the core material groups and learn about Smart materials and technologies

Year 9 Projects include designing and making a sound amplifier in the autumn and spring terms and a bug hotel in the summer term.

Key topics: we explore wider issues associated with the designed and made world including sustainability and circular economy

KS4

The Design and Technology GCSE course offers students the opportunity to develop ingenuity, resourcefulness and entrepreneurship whilst exploring the roles and responsibilities of the designer and manufacturer in a fast changing technological world. This qualification has been designed to encompass every area of D&T to ensure pupils have a broad experience of working with different materials and processes, whilst developing creativity and learning about the wider issues that impact the design process. The qualification is made up of two components; 

  • Component 1:The written paper – (50% of total GCSE)design_technology
  • Component 2: Non Exam Assessment: Iterative Design Project – ( 50% of total GCSE)

We offer two different GCSE pathways:

Design and Technology (Resistant Materials) Pupils design and make products using a range of compliant materials and traditional practises. Pupils will explore new technologies and be encouraged to incorporate them within the production of their products.

Design and Technology (Product Design) Pupils design and make products using a broader range of materials and technologies including; graphic materials, compliant materials, systems and control, new technologies, modern and smart materials including textiles. 

KS5

The Product Design A Level is an inspiring and rigorous course that provides students with the opportunity to continue and expand their Design and Technology education and prepare them for a graduate course in Design or Engineering.

It provides a unique creative experience where independent learning is essential to students working like a professional designer developing valuable skills for the future. Students will learn how to identify design opportunities, communicate with stakeholders, reflect on their practise and steer product development with User Centred Design. 

Students will look at the wider issues from the perspective of a designer and explore initiatives like Circular Economy to address the pressing issues caused by a throw away society.

The qualification is made up of four components:

  • Unit 1: Exam-Principles written Paper (25% of total A Level)
  • Unit 2: Exam- Problem solving written Paper (25% of total A Level) 
  • Units 3 & 4: Non Exam Assessment- Iterative Design Project (50% of total A Level)

Curriculum Map

D&T CURRICULUM MAP 2021-2022

Miss  L Chan (Head of Design and Technology)