Design & Technology
Intent for the curriculum in D&T, and our understanding of its implementation and impact 22-23
As with all other subjects at St Paul’s, we want pupils to develop the characteristics of learners outlined in DESIRE. We want our pupils to enjoy D&T, to develop resilience and to be determined to solve the problems they approach. We believe all pupils can be successful technicians and we strive to ensure that girls and boys all attain the highest standards possible.
Catholic Social Teaching
Instilling an appreciation for design and the creation of world itself will open the door to some of the greatest expressions of human creativity. D&T allows possibilities for the human spirit to flourish through thoughtful contemplation, an appreciation of the skills of others, a sense of awe about the world around us and a desire to help protect and share the beauty we see in all of God’s creation. In the teaching of D&T, emphasis will be made on ‘Laudato Si’ and our responsibility as stewards of our world. Discussions on sustainability will be frequent in selecting materials for many D&T projects and the preservation of God’s creation.
Being largely practical, D&T is an accessible subject for most pupils, including those with additional needs. Children are often given the option to work in pairs or groups and projects usually involve hands-on activities where there is an opportunity to develop skills in thinking and creativity alongside communication. Very often, D&T projects are particularly appealing to those with SEN allowing them to both think and work ‘outside the box’. Where necessary, resources can be adapted and children work within their own capabilities.
Oracy falls naturally into D&T as it intrinsically involves communicating and presenting ideas to others. Pupils will apply and enhance their developing oracy skills in most D&T projects which require cooperation and discussion throughout from the point of initial investigation to design, then making, presentation and evaluation of a product.
We believe design and technology is about understanding the process of designing and making products for a specific user and purpose. It involves children in learning about the world we live in and developing a wide range of knowledge and skills through designing and making. We believe Design and Technology offers opportunities for children to:
- develop their capability to create high quality products through combining their designing and making skills with knowledge and understanding;
- develop the ability to evaluate and reflect on their work
- develop technical knowledge and/or use of tools within a given project
- develop a sense of enjoyment and pride in their ability to make;
- nurture creativity and innovation through designing and making;
- develop an interest and understanding of the ways in which people from the past and present have used design to meet their needs.
Reasoning and trouble-shooting are an integral part of D&T lessons at St Paul’s, enabling children to use, develop competence in, and deepen understanding of, the prerequisite concepts and skills that are necessary to succeed in the projects set.
New content is introduced in manageable steps, project by project, carefully building on previous steps to enable progress. Appropriate sequencing is key to successful learning in D&T. Children will experience the process of producing something to meet certain requirements on a practical basis.
Formative assessment takes place every lesson and planning is flexible so that gaps can be addressed promptly to enable children to keep up with their peers wherever possible or be moved on to extend skills or applications if learning is quicker than expected. Teachers use questioning within lessons to identify and help children needing extra support within that lesson wherever possible. The end result is also assessed by the pupil and by peers.
Key learning can take place as part of the final evaluation of a project for the individual, in groups and as a whole class.
We know teachers must have sufficient D&T teaching content knowledge to deliver topics effectively. We are confident that this is strong throughout the school. We strive to maintain an open and cohesive working environment as staff at St Paul’s so that teachers and teaching assistants are confident in asking their team leaders or the D&T subject leader for advice when it is required. Team planning and team meetings also provide opportunities for support to be provided if and when it’s required.
The impact will be that all children will develop skills in D&T through memorable projects and lessons that enable them to understand and remember knowledge, concepts and methods. The subject of D&T helps children to think through problems creatively, about how to organise themselves and how to use knowledge and skills to bring about change and to shape the environment. Through design and technology children become confident, discriminating and informed users of products and innovators of the future.