Design and technology is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. Using creativity and imagination, pupils design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. They acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on disciplines such as mathematics, science, engineering, computing and art. Pupils learn how to take risks, becoming resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable citizens. Through the evaluation of past and present design and technology, they develop a critical understanding of its impact on daily life and the wider world. High-quality design and technology education makes an essential contribution to the creativity, culture, wealth and well-being of the nation.
The design and technology curriculum at Aston Fields Middle School, has been designed to allow the key elements of designing, analysing, making, testing and evaluating to be taught across all years, disciplines and projects. Designing and making products should be exciting, inventive and fun. Pupils at Aston Fields Middle School, will develop lifelong practical skills with an understanding of aesthetics, social and environmental issues and industrial practices. They are encouraged to become the innovators of tomorrow. They will become proficient at critiquing their own ideas and products as well as those created by others.
Design technology is about making things that people want and that work well. It is about understanding the user and importance of producing high quality products to satisfy the consumers’ demands and expectations.
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
Department for Education
Pupils at Aston Fields Middle School complete a carousel of design and technology subjects each academic year. Each project has been developed to give individual pupils the opportunity to explore, experience and enjoy this creative and versatile subject. Pupils are taught by specialist teachers in dedicated classrooms, fully equipped with modern tools and technology.
As you will see from the examples below, pupils use their skills across a wide range of projects, producing work of a consistently high standard. They build year on year on the skills and knowledge and they learn to leave Aston Fields Middle School with a broad understanding of the subject.
An overview of the carousel for each year group is as follows*:
*all projects are continually reviewed and amended to suit the needs of the pupils at Aston Fields Middle School. The following is an overview of projects that have been completed to date. Future projects may be an adapted version of the following:
Expressive arts rotation – all year 5 pupils complete a carousel of expressive art projects designed to give them a taster of all of the design technology disciplines, alongside other expressive and creative subjects. Some examples of projects pupils may be offered are detailed below:
Bread Sensory Analysis and Making
|Design a waterpark
|Outdoor art activities linked to artists such as Antony Gormley
Moving Toy Wind spinners Key rings
|Exploring colour and its use in artwork
Food Technology - pupils complete a Pizza and Scones project.
Within this project pupils will:
|- learn the fundamentals of hygiene and safety in the food room
|- complete a session of sensory analysis
|- use a variety of resources to inform a design
|- assess and evaluate their products, looking for ways of developing their product further
- learn key cooking skills through the completion of 4 practical sessions:
Resistant Materials - pupils create a fairground carousel. Within this project pupils will:
|- learn about tools and how to use them safely and efficiently
|- learn about resistant materials and how to cut and shape wood
|- study the contemporary artist Cleo Mussi
|- investigate existing products
|- design a fairground carousel
|- produce a quality product
Textiles – pupils complete a Cushion project. Within this project pupils will:
|- learn about the types and varieties of textiles
|- will evaluate existing products
|- experience using a sewing machine safely and effectively
|- will use felt or create felt using their own unique designs to be applied as an image on their cushion cover
|- will practice embellishment
|- complete a usable, attractive and decorative cushion cover
Art – pupils study an artist or art culture in detail and produce artwork in that style.
|Artists used within this project include: Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Georgia O’ Keefe and Henri Matisse. Cultures used within this project have included: Islamic, Aboriginal and African.
Food Technology: Pupils begin the Licence to Cook project, where they are taken through a series of theory and practical lessons that will introduce them to all of the key appliances and principles of basic cookery.
The Year 7 section of the project includes:
|Safety in the food room
|Hygiene and Food Safety
|Healthy Lifestyles and the Eatwell plate
|Basic Knife Skills (Dips and Dippers)
|Using the grill (Pizza Toast)
|Sensory Analysis and Product Description
|Hob work (savoury rice and own design curry)
Tasty Toastie Success at Aston Fields Middle School!
Pupils in Year 7 and 8 were invited to design toasties for the Worcestershire County Council Tasty Toastie Competition which they launched as part of their ongoing Food Savvy campaign.
We are very proud to say that Alex’s design of a toastie made with alphabet spaghetti, bacon, mushrooms and cheese, won the competition and Alex was presented with a cheque of £250 for our school to spend on food related projects.
Resistant Materials: pupils are introduced to a variety of resistant materials and basic mechanisms via a clock project.
|The project includes:
|- Safety in the work shop
|- ACCESSFM (a tool used to analyse existing products)
|- Generating ideas
|- 4 x 4 designing
|- Graphic drawing
|- Making and decorating
|- Testing and evaluating
Textiles: in this project pupils are introduced to a variety of textile materials, techniques and skills. The main outcome is for pupils to research, design and produce a usable, lined bag with embellishments.
STEAM project: Within this project pupils get to explore the elements of STEAM: Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics.
Pupils explore existing products, understand electronics and circuits along with designing and making their own Jitter Toy using a Jitterbug kit as their basis. Skills covered include using bench mounted tools with precision, along with completing a circuit using a soldering iron, as well as applying art and craft materials to complete their own unique Jitter Toy.
Food Technology: pupils complete the Licence to Cook Project.
In this section pupils will:
|Complete a recap of the safety considerations when working in the Food Room
|Advanced food hygiene and safety
|Tools in the food room
|Advanced knife skills (fruit salad or pasta salad)
|Using the hob (fajitas and bolognaise)
|Advanced baking (own design muffins)
|Designing and making pasta dishes (posh macaroni cheese / pasta bake / chicken and bacon pasta)
Resistant Materials: pupils complete a project that covers the following areas:
|- Safety in the work shop
|- Advanced investigation of resistant materials
|- Developing skills and techniques using hand tools and work shop machinery
|- Product Analysis
Textiles: Progressing from existing skills pupils will be offered the opportunity to design and make a practical product that incorporates embellishments and fastenings.
Systems and Control: Pupils will complete a project designing and making audio amplifiers where possible incorporating up-cycled materials.
Sustainability Project: Pupils will be given the opportunity to consider their world around them via this project. They will look at sustainability and will be offered opportunities to upcycle existing textile products. Products made will vary but some examples of upcycled items pupils may choose to create are shown below: