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Design and Technology – curriculum information


At Bricknell Primary School, our Design and Technology Curriculum provides opportunities for the children to think of themselves as, and become, designers and producers of purposeful products that will be used in real-life contexts. We encourage the children to think and intervene creatively to solve problems both as individuals and as members of a team. The children consider their own and others’ needs, wants and values. The children are also given opportunities to reflect upon and evaluate past and present design technology, its uses and effectiveness and they are encouraged to become innovators and risk takers.

At Bricknell, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 utilise the KAPOW teaching scheme and teachers plan and deliver Design and Technology as part of their overarching themes. Alongside this, our highly skilled subject leader has carefully worked to create a Progressive Skills Document where objectives for each year group are progressively mapped out to ensure our pupils are given the acquired skills and knowledge that further their education journey into KS3.

Our aim is to provide inclusive and aspirational environments and learning experiences where pupils thrive and build the cultural capital they need to make ambitious choices about their own futures, overcoming any barriers. In order to achieve this, our curriculum is underpinned by the principles highlighted in our Aspiration Curriculum.

Bricknell Aspiration Curriculum

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Within the Design and Technology Progressive Skills Document, our progressive objectives identify what pupils should know by the end of each year group and link to prior learning. These enable teachers to identify and plug gaps in pupils’ knowledge and skills. Within Design and Technology, pupils will develop a deep understanding of key concepts and second order concepts. These key concepts have been carefully considered and identified as the core knowledge and skills, required to successfully achieve in Design and Technology. The Key concepts are revisited and developed as the pupils move through the school to ensure the knowledge and skills are firmly embedded within the long-term memory. These key concepts compliment work carried out across the school in line with the Aspiration Curriculum. The expectation is that, by the end of primary school, children will know and understand these key concepts and to give them a solid foundation to enter the Design and Technology curriculum at KS3.

In addition to first order concepts, the subject leader has identified subject specific second order concepts. These can be used across all aspects of a subject to organise the substantive knowledge and skills taught.

The Design and Technology curriculum is structured into five key concepts:

• Designing
• Making
• Evaluating
• Technical knowledge
• Cooking and nutrition

Second order concepts:

These second order concepts will be explored and developed throughout the D&T curriculum as pupils move through the school. They can be used across all aspects of a subject to organise the substantive knowledge taught.

– Responsibility: (working safely, how design can solve problems, choosing the right materials, responsibilities to customers to ensure quality / reliable products, healthy eating, quality ingredients)

– Similarity and difference: (making comparisons, noting differences and drawing conclusions)

– Cause and consequence: (identifying how things work, how an action can cause change/movement)

– Significance: (significant designers and designs, real world examples of effective and successful products)

– Written and oral expression: (Using terminology, evaluating, creating accurate designs, labelling and annotating, explaining processes, presenting)

By the end of EYFS, pupils will:

• be able to explore and choose a range of materials to create and make things
• be able to investigate how things work
• draw, build and make things which fulfil a function

By the end of Key Stage 1, pupils will:

• learn the knowledge and skills needed to design and make products for a range of relevant contexts
• be able to design and test products that are purposeful and appealing
• select tools and materials which are most suitable to make their products from
• evaluate their products against existing products and design criteria
• develop the technical knowledge needed to build structures which are stronger and more stable and be able to use a range of mechanisms

• develop an understanding of where food comes from and how to use the basic principles of a healthy diet to make their own simple dishes

By the end of Key Stage 2, pupils will:

• develop further knowledge and skills to enable them to design and make purposeful and quality products in different contexts
• be able to research how existing products work and use this to develop designs and products to meet a design brief
• be able to produce more detailed, annotated designs and to test and refine their ideas
• be able to select and use a wider range of tools and materials according to their function and properties
• develop the technical knowledge required to make their products work effectively
• be able to evaluate the effectiveness and quality of their products and use this to improve their work
• develop an understanding of a healthy and varied diet and be able to prepare and cook a range of dishes.

Any child working below their age-related expectation will receive a tailored curriculum with personalised objectives taken from the Curriculum Assessment Toolkit. This will enable all children to build the skills and knowledge needed to bridge the gap between themselves and their peers, enabling them to reach their full potential.


At Bricknell Primary School, our curriculum is carefully mapped out into a Long-Term Plan by our highly skilled subject coordinator. This enables links between subjects to be identified and carefully planned for to support pupils’ retention of knowledge and skills.

The academic year is broken down into 3 overarching themes. Design and Technology projects, relevant to the year group’s overarching theme, are delivered in blocks to ensure children are fully immersed. Cross curricular links are sought where possible and outcomes are demonstrated in Design and Technology books as well as photographic or video evidence.

At Bricknell, Design and Technology lessons will follow the same teaching sequence outlined below.

At Bricknell, all Design and Technology projects will follow the same teaching sequence outlined below over more than one lesson, with exceptions to the cooking and nutrition key concept.

In light of Covid 19 and Bricknell’s Recovery Curriculum, subject leaders have identified key concepts across the curriculum which need to be prioritised in each year group to ensure that pupils have the knowledge required to access their next progressive steps in their education and enable them to access the National Curriculum.


A wide range of strategies are used to measure the impact of our Design and Technology curriculum. Our teaching sequence allows children to respond to a ‘Big Question’, where appropriate to assess the knowledge absorbed into the long-term memory of pupils. Formative assessments are also carried out by teachers after each lesson which will allow them to inform future planning. Additionally, summative assessments are carried out by using an internal assessment tool. As a result of these assessment tools, pupils’ misconceptions or gaps in subject knowledge, skills, behaviours and attitudes are addressed and additional teaching and support is provided.

In EYFS, staff professional judgements are valued. Assessments are formative so that they quickly make a difference to children’s learning. They inform the provision of activities and experiences which develop children’s skills and knowledge as well as giving opportunity for further practise. We record WOW moments on Tapestry and build up a detailed picture of each child using a Child on a Page document.

Our Subject Leader will monitor the effectiveness of the Design and Technology curriculum through carrying out regular subject 360 evaluations. These evaluations are quality assured by the Curriculum Lead, Senior Leadership and Governors.

The effectiveness of Design and Technology is also monitored through pupil and parental voice throughout the course of the year.

Further information:

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