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Kids in Technology Class

Design Technology

The Curriculum Gift that we give to our children...

To have opportunities to use things they have made recognising that their work really is purposeful and practical and to produce something of their own that makes them go,“Wow!” and that is bigger than them!

More Information about Design Technology



Within the Federation, we have designed our Design and Technology (D&T) curriculum with the intent that our children will gain a practical understanding of the world around them, and become resilient, independent, creative thinkers with the confidence to use, and build on, their learning outside of the classroom.

We will deliver a curriculum that:

  • Will arch across the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum, though the Key Stage 1 (KS1) and Key Stage 2 (KS2) National Curriculum and prepare children for the journey beyond.

  • Facilitates creative learning that provides opportunity for the development of higher order thinking skills.

  • Scaffolded by excellent teaching practices, allows children to develop functional, appealing products that are aimed at particular individuals or groups and are fit for purpose.

  • Promotes analytical thinking, in identifying the features, problems and solutions in products.

  • Will challenge children to research information and think for themselves, give reasoned answers, work independently, be enterprising, and develop good resilience and attitudes to learning.

  • Builds on prior learning and promotes the progression of skills.

  • Creates a fun, enjoyable and engaging environment and memorable learning experiences.

  • Allows children to consider the views of others, evaluate their ideas and products against their own design criteria to improve their work.

We have adopted the Cornerstones Curriculum to ensure that we have high quality, knowledge rich projects that are well sequenced throughout school.  Specific units covered in each class can be found on class pages > overviews, whilst further information about the Cornerstones Design Technology curriculum can be found below. 

The identity and characteristics of each school are very important to us. As such, the curriculum drivers for each school add a bespoke element to the Cornerstones scheme , further enhancing and personalising the curriculum


The curriculum is led and overseen by the Design Technology curriculum leader, who will regularly monitor, evaluate and review D&T teaching and learning, celebrating and sharing good practice. As with all subjects, the leader facilitates an in-depth subject inquiry with pupils, parents and staff. The outcome report can be found at the bottom of this page.  Formative assessments will be integrated into every day DT teaching to ensure teachers have an in depth knowledge of the children’s learning and inform their next steps. Low stakes testing of DT will also inform termly assessments and allow for long term memory development and secure understanding of skills. 


The National Curriculum 2014 and the Early Years Foundation Stage statutory framework 2017 provide the basis for our DT curriculum, which is then tailored to meet the learning and developmental needs of the children in our school.  


Teachers will plan DT using the newly developed progression of knowledge and skills documents which will allow children to build upon prior knowledge and understanding. All schools within the Federation use the Cornerstones Curriculum to ensure that planning both in terms of sequencing and progression in DT is appropriately challenging and robust. 

The design and technology projects are well sequenced to provide a coherent subject scheme that develops children’s designing, planning, making and evaluating skills. Each project is based around a design and technology subject focus of structures, mechanisms, cooking and nutrition or textiles. The design and technology curriculum’s electronic systems and IT monitoring and control elements are explicitly taught in our science projects to ensure the links between the subjects are highlighted.


Where possible, meaningful links to other areas of the curriculum have been made. For example, the cooking and nutrition project Eat the Seasons is taught alongside the geography project Sow, Grow and Farm.


All the projects follow a structure where children are introduced to key concepts and build up knowledge and skills over time, using a more comprehensive range of equipment and building, cutting, joining, finishing and cooking techniques as they progress through school. All projects contain focused, practical tasks in the Develop stage to help children gain the knowledge and skills needed to complete their Innovate tasks independently.

What will pupils know?

Our curriculum intent; what children in all ages across school will know is guided by the National Curriculum. Going further,  knowledge and skills are sequenced and linked with other areas of learning to provide children with what we believe to be a spectacular science curriculum. Our progression documents can be found below.  Our 'Big Ideas'  across the curriculum are lenses in which we see and study each National Curriculum subject . Within each subject, each Big Idea is mapped to a more precise aspect. These aspects provide the necessary disciplinary knowledge for each subject. By organising learning in this way we are able to plan for deeper learning within each subject discipline whilst linking all learning in school to broader categories or Big Ideas. This also enables knowledge, skills and concepts to  be constantly revisited, helping children to know more and remember more. 

By the end of Y6 we want children to know about: 

Everyday products 

Staying Safe 

Mechanisms and movement


Generation of ideas


Use of  IT



Cutting and joining textiles

Materials for purpose

Decorating and embellishing textiles


Food preparation and cooking 


Origins of food

Compare and contrast

Significant People

Throughout Key Stages 1 and 2, children build up their knowledge and understanding of the iterative design process. They design, make, test and evaluate their products to match specific design criteria and ensure they fit their purpose. Throughout the projects, children are taught to work hygienically and safely.

Key Stage 1

In the autumn term of Year 1, children begin to learn about structures in the project Shade and Shelter before designing and making a shelter. In the spring term project Taxi!, they learn the term ‘mechanism’ and assemble and test wheels and axles. In the summer term, children begin to learn about food sources in the project Chop, Slice and Mash and use simple preparation techniques to create a supermarket sandwich.

In the autumn term of Year 2, children learn more about food in the project Remarkable Recipes, where they find out about food sources, follow recipes and learn simple cooking techniques. In the spring term project Beach Hut, children develop their knowledge of structures further, learning to cut, join and strengthen wood for the first time. In the summer term, children begin to develop their understanding of textiles in Cut, Stitch and Join. They learn to sew a simple running stitch, use pattern pieces and add simple embellishments. They also continue to learn about mechanisms in the project Push and Pull by using sliders, levers and linkages in products.

Lower Key Stage 2

In the autumn term of Year 3, children continue to learn about food, understanding the concept of a balanced diet and making healthy meals in the project Cook Well, Eatwell. In the spring term project Making it Move, children extend their understanding of mechanisms by exploring cams and using joining and finishing techniques to make automaton toys. In the summer term project Greenhouse, they continue to develop their knowledge of structures, using triangles and braces for strength. They design and build a greenhouse, using their understanding of opacity and transparency and the needs of plants from science learning to inform their design.

In the autumn term of Year 4, children continue to develop their understanding of food in the project Fresh
Food, Good Food. They learn about food safety and preservation technologies before designing and making packaging for a healthy snack. During the spring term project Functional and Fancy Fabrics, children continue to explore textiles, learning about the work of William Morris before designing, embellishing and finishing a fabric sample. In the summer term project Tomb Builders, they build on their knowledge of mechanisms, learning about six simple machines and using their knowledge to create a lifting or moving device prototype. They also explore and use electrical systems and IT monitoring and control in the science project Electrical Circuits and Conductors for the first time.

Upper Key Stage 2

In the autumn term of Year 5, children deepen their understanding of mechanisms by studying pneumatic systems in the project Moving Mechanisms. They learn about the forces at play and create a prototype for a functional, pneumatic machine. In the spring term project Eat the Seasons, children continue to explore food and nutrition, learning about seasonal foods and the benefits of eating seasonally. In the summer term, they learn more about structures in the project Architecture, studying the history of architecture and developing new ways to create structural strength and stability. They use computer-aided design and consolidate their making skills to produce scale models. They also explore the electrical conductivity of materials before making products incorporating circuits in the science project Properties and Changes of Materials.

In the autumn term of Year 6, children learn about processed and whole foods in the project Food for Life, creating healthy menus from unprocessed foods. In the spring term project Engineer, children consolidate their knowledge of structures, joining and strengthening techniques and electrical systems by completing a bridge-building challenge. In the summer term project Make Do and Mend, they extend their knowledge of textiles by learning new stitches to join fabrics and using pattern pieces to create a range of products


The Design and Technology curriculum will:


  • Provide opportunities for all children to collaborate, learn from, understand and react to each other’s perspectives and strengths.

  • Create an enjoyable, engaging academic outlet for children who may find traditional subjects challenging.

  • Give children an insight into how physical products can be created and an understanding of basic concepts used in everyday items.   

  • Set a firm foundation of subject skills to create a smooth transition to KS3.

  • Children will move through, and leave the school, with the confidence that they can design, make and change products and items and belief that qualifications and careers incorporating D&T are within their capability.

Would you like to know more about Design and Technology within the Federation?

If you would like to see the topics we cover in D and T, please visit class pages. For D and T topics together with the vocabulary that we cover, you may find the below documents useful;

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Year 6

You can find out more about the specific way provision in Foundation Stage 2 links into the subject by reading about objectives that children access in Design and Technology in the Foundation Stage.

You may also wish to find out more about how children make progress across the school by reading our Design and Technology Progression Grid which explains the knowledge and skills we expect a typical child to demonstrate at the end of each year.

Click here to return to the Curriculum page.

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