Design and Technology


Subject Curriculum Vision

In Design and Technology, we aim to provide our children with an education that is inspiring, rigorous and practical. Using their creativity and imagination, we aim to equip our pupils with the skills required to design and make products that solve real and relevant problems, within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values.

At Birley Primary Academy, we strive to ensure that children acquire a broad range of subject knowledge which allows them to draw upon disciplines of other curriculum subjects, such as Maths, Science and Computing. Most importantly, during their education in the subject, our children will learn how to take risks, become resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable citizens.


Aims of the National Curriculum

The overarching aim for Design and Technology in the National Curriculum is to promote high standards of purposeful and functional design work by encouraging pupils creativity and imagination.

The National Curriculum for Design and Technology aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world
  • build and apply a repertoire of knowledge, understanding and skills in order to design and make high-quality prototypes and products for a wide range of users
  • critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others
  • understand and apply the principles of nutrition and learn how to cook.

Teaching of the Curriculum

Details about how Birley Primary Academy deliver our Design and Technology Curriculum can be found in the information below:

  • Through the support of the Design and Technology Association (DATA) scheme, Projects on a Page, children will experience an array of different progressive and linkable skills and techniques over the course of a child’s time at Birley Primary Academy. This ensures that children are constantly building upon previous learning and are able to expand their knowledge and understanding of problem solving, designing and constructing different products.
  • Children will complete 3 projects across each academic year. Projects are blocked to allow children to focus on developing the knowledge and skills whilst fully immersed in the design-make-evaluate project over an allocated period of time.
  • Each project is designed to be launched with a stimulus that will build up children’s experiential learning.
  • During each project, children are also given a variety of real life products to explore in great detail, expanding their knowledge of how they look and work, allowing children to evaluate products against their target market and purpose. 
  • For each project, children follow the design-make-evaluate sequence, allowing children time to reflect upon their design and products and think of ways that they could be improved or adapted. Our teachers support and model increasingly progressive evaluative skills to enable children to create products of a high-quality throughout school. 
  • Children are given a design brief to put the need for the product in context. Where possible, teachers ensure that the brief is linked to another area of their learning or has relevance to the children to inspire their imagination and eagerness to create and problem solve.
  • Safety is explained and modelled at the start of and throughout each product including food hygiene instructions.
  • Children are provided with a knowledge organizer at the start of each project which details key knowledge and vocabulary. This is not used as part of an assessment but to support children with their acquisition of knowledge and used as a reference document.


At Birley Primary Academy, we have an extensive range of resources that support the teaching of our Design and Technology curriculum. These include:

  • Equipment and materials for woodwork
  • Equipment and materials for textiles
  • Equipment and materials for cooking and nutrition
  • Equipment and materials for mechanisms
  • Equipment and materials for electronics
  • CAD/CAM equipment supported by ICT software
  • Non-fiction books about designers, engineers and scientists

Cross-Curricular Links

Cross-curricular links are planned for whenever possible with other subjects, particularly with Maths, Science, ICT and Literacy.


Within Design and Technology, we strive to prepare children to take part in the development of tomorrow’s rapidly changing world. We aim to encourage children to become creative problem-solvers, both as individuals and as part of a team. Through the study of Design and Technology, children combine practical skills with an understanding of aesthetic, social and environmental issues, as well as of functions and industrial practices. This allows them to reflect on and evaluate present and past design and technology, its uses and its impact. Our Design and Technology curriculum is high quality, well thought out and is planned to demonstrate progression. We focus on progression of knowledge and skills and discreet vocabulary progression also form part of the units of work.

How do we measure the impact of our DT curriculum?

The impact of our teaching of Design and Technology is assessed in a number of ways. Formal assessment through observation, questioning, book trawls and marking of children’s work is used alongside more pupil discussions and photographic and video evidence. Collating all of this information enables teachers to assess and evaluate children’s attainment and progress against outcomes outlined in our assessment. In addition to evaluating children’s work, we measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:

  • Subject leader walks
  • Pupil Voice
  • Opportunities to moderate

Readiness for Next Stage of Education

We endeavour to ensure that the sequence of content enables our children to progress whilst they are with us whilst also providing our pupils with the necessary foundations to build upon as they progress into secondary education and beyond.

Promotion of British Values and SMSC

In our Design and Technology curriculum, we promote British values in many different ways. Below, you will find examples of how we achieve this:

  • To promote democracy, we help children to understand that it is not always possible or right to have their own way and understand the value of compromise.
  • To promote rule of law, we ensure children understand the importance of safety rules when using tools and accept that if these rules are not followed that there are consequences to this.
  • To promote individual liberty, we help children to accept that ideas from others may not be the same as their own but we are able to accept this.
  • To help children develop tolerance, we help children to understand that many great design ideas originate from other cultures.

Our pupils develop mutual respect through offering supportive comments in evaluations that will improve learning outcomes in a way that is objective but sensitive to the listener.

Further to this, our DT curriculum is also driven by SMSC development and this can be exemplified in the following ways;

Spiritual Education

  • Spiritual development is very important in DT as the process of creative thinking and problem solving lies at the centre of the subject. A pupil’s ability to think creatively and show innovation can be inspirational to other but also increase their own self confidence and belief in their own abilities.

Moral Education

  • During the planning and making process we encourage our pupils to consider the moral and ethical dilemmas raised. For example the impact on the environment through the choices of materials are made or the opportunity to consider sustainable or environmentally acceptable materials.

Social Education

  • During DT, there are many opportunities to promote social responsibilities. All the children have a collective responsibility to ensure they contribute to a safe working environment where the use of tools and equipment are involved. There is the opportunity to work collaboratively with a partner or take turns in a small group which requires effective social interaction and at times compromise. There is also the opportunity for peer evaluation and to act as a critical friend to give supportive comments to improve pupils learning outcomes

Cultural Education

  • DT often originates from an idea or artefact and to develop a wider cultural awareness we explore our past heritage as well as investigate and use as our stimulus foods, textiles, pottery and sculptures from different cultures and periods of time. For example, Viking long boats or shields, Greek pottery, divas, food from different countries and cultures


Design and Technology Overview

Design and Technology Skills Progression