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Design Technology

Design Technology Subject Leader: Catherine Parris

At Rushton Primary School, we provide a high-quality design and technology education that inspires pupils to use their creativity and imagination when designing and making products that solve real problems.  We have designed our ambitious, carefully sequenced and cohesive curriculum offer using ‘Curriculum Maestro’ from Cornerstones Education. The curriculum design fully complies with the National Curriculum and distinguishes between substantive knowledge (key knowledge) and disciplinary knowledge (skills).   Learning from the content areas of ‘Design’, ‘Make’, ‘Evaluate’ and ‘Technical Knowledge’ is structured so that pupils’ knowledge and understanding builds progressively from year to year. Pupils understand and use a wide range of design techniques and vocabulary which enables them to develop the disciplinary skills needed to ‘think like a Designer’.


Our design and technology curriculum ensures that pupils develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world.  As pupils progress through the curriculum, they build and apply a repertoire of design skills that enable them to make high-quality prototypes and products for a wide range of users.  They learn how to critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others.  Pupils understand the principles of nutrition and the practical skills needed to prepare and cook healthy recipes.  They draw on their knowledge from mathematics, science, engineering, computing and art.  Pupils learn how to take risks and develop an understanding of the impact of design and technology on daily life and the wider world.

At the end of EYFS

Pupils in Reception will develop knowledge and understanding of the Early Learning Goal ‘Expressive Arts and Design’ which serves as a foundation for further learning.  Pupils will learn how to create structures using various materials.  They will learn how to use different joining methods and will explore products to understand how they work, including those that need electricity to make them work.


At the end of Key Stage 1

Pupils will know how to design purposeful products for themselves and other users.  They will know how to use a range of tools, equipment, materials and components to make products. They will develop the technical knowledge needed to build structures and use mechanisms.   Pupils will explore and evaluate existing products and evaluate their own design ideas and products.

At the end of Key Stage 2

Pupils will extend their knowledge of design and technology, enabling them to design innovative, appealing and functional products.  They will know how to use a wider range of tools and equipment.  They will further build their technical knowledge, including the use of computing to program and control products. Pupils will understand how key events and individuals in design and technology have helped shape the world.


Through a variety of creative and practical activities, we teach the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an interactive process of designing and making. Pupils are explicitly taught the vocabulary used in design and technology so that they can successfully evaluate existing products or products made against their own design criteria. Pupils are taught how key events and individuals in design and technology have helped shape the world.



We use a multi-faceted approach to assessment within design and technology.

  • Retrieval practice of key knowledge from previous lessons and units of study.

  • Assessment for learning is used within each lesson through skilful use of questioning and live feedback.

  • Pupil voice to support the evidence that pupils know and remember more over time.


Cultural Capital

Enrichment is an essential part of our design and technology curriculum which provides pupils with discrete time to deepen their learning.  They provide opportunities for new experiences as well as nurturing and developing a thirst for learning. 


Enrichment activities include:

  • After school craft club

  • Wild Wednesdays (Reception and Year 1)


Career Professional Development

We develop strong subject knowledge amongst all staff which is achieved through comprehensive middle leadership development, a focus on developing all teachers’ subject knowledge and pedagogy. All staff benefit from implementing the high-quality planning resources provided by the Trust which is amended to meet the needs of all pupils.


Below is a summary of the CPD activities bespoke to design and technology:

  • Sharing knowledge from trust-wide meetings

  • Bespoke training videos

  • 1:1 discussions with staff about lessons

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