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Design and Technology at Ferham Primary School 

At Ferham Primary School, we believe that design and technology is an integral part of learning about the world around us and teaches children essential life skills. As such, children are introduced to DT concepts both in discrete lessons as well as making links through other subjects such as PSHE, science and art.  Through our DT curriculum, children explore the world as and of diverse designers, chefs, architects and engineers. Taught through exciting, engaging and challenging lessons, our curriculum ensures clear progression of both knowledge and skills and builds upon previous learning. 


Curriculum Intent  


At Ferham, we follow the National Curriculum within our bespoke units of work. The curriculum is designed in a way which ensures that there is clear progression in textiles, mechanisms, structures and electrical systems and well as in cooking and nutrition throughout year groups. 


Our DT curriculum is fully-aligned to the National Curriculum. The knowledge builds sequentially with pupils often revisiting or building upon an idea or concept in a later unit. The substantive and disciplinary knowledge children learn in each phase is set out in our progression grids.  


The DT curriculum has been designed with our Ferham community in mind as a curriculum for life. It incorporates the skills and knowledge that our pupils need to be able to be healthy and successful. Cooking and nutrition lessons ensure that pupils leave Ferham well-prepared not just for secondary education but for later life.  


Pupils learn in a variety of theory and practical lessons. They begin by investigating and exploring existing products and how they work, before trying out some of the techniques they will use in focused practical tasks. Each unit of work culminates in the children designing, making and evaluating their own unique product.  


Subject specific vocabulary is used in all lessons, including explicit teaching of tier 2 and 3 vocabulary (Alex Quigley, 2018). With the right support, we expect that all children will be able to master the DT curriculum. 


Our DT curriculum incorporates discrete teaching and learning about chefs, designers, engineers and architects of a wide range of nationalities and genders to reflect and empower our diverse community. 


Curriculum Implementation  


In EYFS, the children learn about DT through ‘Understanding the World’ and ‘Expressive Arts and Design’. They benefit from exploring different materials using all their senses to investigate them and use those materials to create simple models to express their ideas.  Pupils in EYFS explore existing products and how they work, including mechanisms such as hinges, catches, zips, wheels and axles. Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design are taught cross-curricularly to whole class groups as well as in smaller focus groups and within classroom provision. 


In KS1 &2, one DT unit is taught termly. Discrete DT lessons are usually taught weekly although they may be blocked on consecutive days in order to facilitate the manufacture/cooking of a project. DT lessons include the teaching of subject specific vocabulary which is also displayed in the classroom where children are able to see it and use it. Child-friendly definitions support children to understand new vocabulary. See an example below. 






















A DT unit of work includes the investigation and evaluation of existing products, focused practical tasks and results in designing, making and evaluating their own individual product.  


Teachers benefit from in-house CPD. If teachers need to build their subject knowledge in order to meet the requirements of the teaching standards and successfully teach the unit, bespoke support is available.  


Within DT lessons, teachers present subject knowledge in small chunks and make links to prior learning. Retrieval practice takes place at the beginning of each lesson to check that children have retained previous knowledge and this also serves as a foundation for pupils who are new to school. Carefully crafted questions are used to check for understanding in order to gain more awareness of the learning in the classroom. DT is made accessible to SEND children by the use of first-hand experiences where appropriate. SEND and EAL children also benefit from working alongside their peers whilst language is introduced and built upon both throughout the series of lessons.  Lessons are further adapted through the use of visuals, pre-teaching, practical hands-on experiences and opportunities to vocalise their learning to ensure that learners with SEND retain at least one key piece of ‘sticky knowledge’ in each lesson. For example, Communicate in Print is used to create word banks or resources. Practical sessions may also involve the use of different materials or tools to support pupils with their fine or gross motor skills. For example, a child who finds drawing and measuring a barrier to learning may design their net for a shell structure on a simple drawing programme where they can drag shapes out to the desired size. A child who finds sewing challenging may use binka to practise on. 


Curriculum Impact  


Assessment in DT takes three forms: assessment for learning; assessment as learning; and assessment of learning.  

Assessment for learning in DT is continuous as teachers adapt their teaching according to learners’ needs during lessons. This may include remodelling, additional scaffolding such as word mats or written steps to follow or extra challenge such as independent research.  

Assessment as learning is at the beginning of each lesson. Pupils complete a retrieval exercise to recall and embed important learning into their long-term memories. The teacher then uses this assessment to determine if any subject knowledge needs to be retaught or reinforced. 

In DT, assessment of learning is focused on our curriculum. Assessment of children’s learning and attainment considers the skills and processes children have learned and how successfully they have used these at all stages within a unit as well as how they have applied these to create the end-product. Assessment does not solely consider the finished product as this does not necessarily reflect all of the learning that has taken place. A ‘Key Skills Profile’ is completed for each child at the end of each unit. 


In EYFS, children are assessed using the Early Learning Goals in the areas of ‘Understanding the World’ and ‘Expressive Arts and Design’.  


The subject leader measures impact through work scrutiny, alongside talking to teachers and pupils. Pupils are asked what they know now that they didn’t know before. The subject leader carries out interviews with pupils to identify if the knowledge and vocabulary have been understood and transferred to the long-term memory. The subject leader then feeds back to staff on which areas of learning children were secure. If there are found to be gaps in knowledge, class teachers address this by adding retrieval questions into subsequent lessons or where necessary re-teaching. 


Children’s attainment in DT is reported to parents annually in their end of year report.  





























DT Fig 1.jpg
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DT Cooking & Nutrition 





DT Long Term Curriculum Map

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