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Design and Technology

At Thomas More we aim to:

  • Enable students to become independent learners and enterprising and innovative designers and engineers.
  • Encourage students to actively contribute to the creativity, culture, wealth and well-being of themselves and their community.
  • Teach students how to take risks to develop skills in becoming more resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable.
  • Help students to develop a critical understanding of the impact of design and technology on daily life and the wider world.
  • Provide excellent opportunities for students to develop and apply value judgements of an aesthetic, economic, moral, social, and technical nature both in their own designing and when evaluating the work of others.
  • Encourage students to explore a range of careers such as Architecture, Engineering and Product Designing and the possible avenues to success in the field of design, including routes into further education and apprenticeships.  

KS3

Key Stage 3 is delivered through a single lesson twice over two weeks.  This lasts for three half terms after which the students swap with food technology. Teaching is structured to include theory and practical activities to enhance learning; homework is given every week and will relate to the work covered during lessons to support this learning. The subject material is directly relative to the AQA specification for Design & Technology, to help prepare students for the transition from KS3 to KS4. We focus on using a variety of materials which including paper, cards, woods, plastics and metals.

Current projects across KS3 include:

Year 7 – A picture frame made from acrylic and a mechanical bird made of MDF.

Year 8 - A Jewellery box with separate lid feature made from three different types of wood; Ply. Pine and MDF; and an investigation into structure and how bridges stand up.

Year 9 - Our year 9 Design & Technology students are starting the new specification AQA GCSE Design and Technology   These changes will apply to all students taking Design and Technology from September 2017. The exam includes a written exam which is 50% of the GCSE and a non-examination element which include coursework and a final product which is also 50% of the GCSE.

Students are required to produce a substantial design and make task, which will be assessed on how they investigate, design, construct and evaluate their work. Cross-curricular links are strongly used with Literacy, Numeracy and ICT as well as with Science, Geography and History.

Year 9 students will be designing and making bookends inspired by a well-known artist. This project combines acrylic and pine and incorporates 2D computer design and laser cutting.  They also develop an environmentally aware project where they design and make lamps using recycled everyday objects. 

Year 10 is introduced through an initial ‘Design and Make’ project, to ensure pupils have the skills needed to complete their Non Examination Assessment (NEA) to a high standard. In the second term the Controlled Assessment is introduced and research in undertaken by students to explore the Design Brief. This is a real industry brief; a design problem that an existing client has, for which the students must provide a solution through a ‘Design and Make’ challenge. Alongside this we follow an extensive theory based SOW recommended by the Examination board.

Year 11 is continued with students focusing on their NEA task; students will be preparing to design make their final design outcome.

learning is embedded into a multitude of activities, including practical making and computer Technology to improve student’s ability in various design programmes and in their general computer use.  Students will have theory lessons each week and have regular mock examinations which will better prepare them for their Summer Examinations.

We aim for the Controlled Assessment to be fully completed by January so that a full focus is on preparation for the exam. In addition, GCSE students are also responsible for their own learning. Year 11 students must commit to apply at least two hours a week to their Design & Technology course in their own time to ensure they achieve the best possible results.

Resources introduced for 2017

  • Electronic portfolios for all students
  • Introduction of electronic tracking system for GCSE students
  • Hard copy portfolios or folders for all students
  • Individual learning plans for students who require additional assistance with key areas
  • Developed revision guides and resources available to all students
  • After school coursework sessions for all GCSE students
  • Lunchtime catch up club available to all students
  • Specialist electronics car club available to a selection of students  
  • Introduction of 3D CAD software available to all students
  • Trips to design shows and exhibitions to a selection of students
  • End of year design exhibition to showcase student work

Department Members

  • Miss Downie, Head of Design and Technology
  • Mr Migliori, Design and Technology Technician