Design and Technology
Design and Technology is a subject that we are passionate about at St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School. Design and Technology lessons are taught as part of our ‘Creative Curriculum’. Our Design Technology curriculum has been carefully crafted so that our children develop their design and technology capital. We ensure that within each lesson, the children have an opportunity to develop the 4 C’s: Creativity; Critical Thinking; Communication and Collaboration. Our ‘Engage Days’ often have an element of Design and Technology incorporated into them- building structures such as moving Ferris Wheels and miniature Air Raid Shelters.
Wherever we can, links are made to ‘real-life’ professions and contexts to give the children a sense of purpose when engaged in their work.
DT in the Early Years
The Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage separates learning and development into seven areas (three prime areas and four specific areas). The area that relates to DT is entitled, ‘expressive arts and design’. Within this document, the following targets relate to design and technology:
Children safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques.
They experiment with colour, design, texture, form and function
Children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes.
They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through design and technology, art, music, dance, role-play and stories.
At St Joseph’s, we are big advocates of encouraging and developing DT skills in the Early Years though a mixture of adult led sessions and child-initiated play.
Many of our different learning zones allow for open-ended DT projects. These include: junk modelling, small-scale indoor construction, large-scale outdoor construction, water play and sand play.
Children are taught how to safely (and independently) use a variety of skills throughout the year and these skills are built upon in Year 1.
Measuring accurately is a key Design and Technology skill- it allows children to apply and consolidate their mathematical understanding. There is also plenty of opportunity to problem solve and think critically when designing!
Children can apply their instructional writing skills in the planning process of their DT work as well as developing their speaking and listening skills when communicating their ideas to others.
An understanding of forces is essential for creating mechanisms (pulleys, wheels and axles, levers and linkages). Selecting appropriate materials is also essential.
The ability to visually express ideas accurately is an artistic skill. It enables children to develop their ideas, plan their projects and communicate the concept to others.
Computing knowledge and skills can be applied to DT work, providing real life opportunities to put skills to practical use.