Welcome to the Design and Technology Department

Meet Our Staff

  • Mrs K Stephens (Head of Department)
  • Mr M Gallagher
  • Mrs A Campbell
  • Miss S Cowap
  • Mr L O'Brien
  • Mrs E Sharpe

Our curriculum is organised in such a way that it provides learners with the best opportunities to be successful in their learning. Our principles focus on depth not just breadth by creating a mastery within the curriculum, which stretches learners and accelerates their progress over their 7 year learning journey at our college. In this section of the website you will find the subject intent, implementation and impact.

Alongside this, are our long and medium term plans which enable all stakeholders to have a clear understanding of the content, knowledge and skills taught within this curriculum area. The long term plan also outlines the cultural capital experiences and career opportunities learners have within the subject, as well as our tailored approach to supporting learners' metacognitive processes. Further to these documents, the discrete sequencing of lessons are in the College's bespoke schemes of work that can be accessed through departments.

'Only the best will do!'

What exactly do they learn?

KS3 Design and Technology builds on the skills and knowledge pupils have already learnt at primary school. As students' progress through KS3, they will be given the opportunity to focus on specific aspects of the subject such as product design, food technology, textiles and graphics. At its core is creativity and imagination. Students will learn to design and make products that solve genuine, relevant problems within different contexts whilst considering their own and others' needs, wants and values. To do this effectively, they will acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on additional disciplines such as mathematics, science, engineering, computing and art.

At KS4 students will opt for their preferred material area to study at EDUQAS GCSE Fashion& Textiles, Hospitality and catering & BTEC construction.

How do you measure attainment and progress?

Students are assessed formally twice across the college year in line with college policy. Progress is tracked according to a set of core skills that they will progress through, throughout KS3. Staff will give a combination of verbal and next step feedback to students as to how best to improve their work and make use of the trackers in the booklets for each material area.

Feedback helps students be aware of their strengths and weakness of studied topic and in conjunction with the progress tracker /skills list to enable independent improvement of their work. Students will refine their skills of the design loop by revisiting the topic as they rotate to all the material areas in D&T this so that progress is made from the previous starting point.

What's the purpose of teaching your subject?

Design and Technology is a practical and valuable subject. It enables children and young people to actively contribute to the creativity, culture, wealth and well-being of themselves, their community and their nation. It teaches how to take risks and so become more resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable. Students develop a critical understanding of the impact of design and technology on daily life and the wider world. Additionally, it provides 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.

What did they learn at primary?

Students have an induction period in DT when joining the college. Through a questionnaire and Informal questioning, staff can assess where students are at enabling staff to identify prior learning and gaps in learning. Our KS3 DT curriculum is in the main a starting point for students, as creative subjects appear not to be as prevalent as core subjects. We are developing links with our primary feeder schools to establish what areas of DT covered so far to ensure students can be stretched and make progress immediately when starting at Archbishop Beck.

What order do you teach things in and why?

KS3 is a carousel around four key material areas – topics are revisited within each rotation and each year covering all aspects of the design loop within each project they complete. In year 9 we offer a mini options were students will be given the opportunity to choose their 2 preferred materials areas, for half a year in each. This will allow students to get a real taste of what they subject and what it looks like at GCSE and allow them to refine and develop their skills.

How do you know that you have a 'good' curriculum?

The students perform well at Key Stage 3 and develop key skills that support their progression into GCSE. This impacts the department positively as the demand is high when students pick their options at Key Stage 4, in many cases leading to two teaching groups running as option choices. Excellent Key Stage 4 outcomes are achieved in fashion, textiles, food and construction all qualifications showing a positive progress score. This leads to many students opting to continue qualifications at Post 16, again achieving positive value added scores and destinations within HE and employment.

How do you enrich your subject outside the classroom?

KS3 All students in year 7 & 8 will have the opportunity to outside the classroom experiences ranging from research trips to museums, primary research, bringing speakers into school to talk or demonstrate aspects of material areas. KS4 We have trips to art galleries, museums, visits from artists/past students, chefs and trip to New York for students within all of the Arts at archbishop Beck.