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Design and Technology faculty

Design and Technology faculty overview

Secondary Design and Technology builds on the skills and knowledge pupils have already learnt at Middle School. It leverages increasingly sophisticated resources, including dedicated teaching environments, manufacturing equipment and specialist teaching. As students progress through this phase, they will be given the opportunity to focus on specific aspects of the subject such as product design, food and nutrition, textiles and graphics. However, at its core is creativity and imagination. Students learn to design and make products that solve genuine, relevant problems within different contexts whilst considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. To do this effectively, they will acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on additional disciplines such as mathematics, science, engineering, computing and art.

Design and Technology is a practical and valuable subject. It enables children and young people to actively contribute to the creativity, culture, wealth and well-being of themselves, their community and their nation. It teaches how to take risks and so become more resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable. Students develop a critical understanding of the impact of design and technology on daily life and the wider world. Additionally, it provides excellent opportunities for students to develop and apply value judgements of an aesthetic, economic, moral, social, and technical nature both in their own designing and when evaluating the work of others

The breadth and diversity of the subject is reflected in the need for a wide range of space types. At QE, we have purpose built accommodation, which is flexible for learners of the subject, is IT rich and allows for wonderful exhibitions of student work.

We deliver a carousel curriculum at year 9 through our 4 current subjects, leading to students opting for one of these to complete in the summer term. Many students opt to carry on these subjects at GCSE level.

It is inspiring for us when students come to us with innovative and exciting ideas. We encourage a diversity of thinking, experimentation and problem solving. We have developed a strong culture of support for all, respect for each other's ideas and the wide range of outcomes produced by students is great evidence of this.

For more information please contact Mr Richard Wood (Head of Faculty)

DT (Product Design)

"Design and Technology should be as riveting and relevant as the career it channels into. Logical, creative and practical, it’s the only opportunity that school students have to apply what they learn in maths and science – directly preparing them for a future in engineering."

James Dyson Inventor

At year 9, we believe in a Design and Technology curriculum based on an iterative design process and bitesized project-based learning, which is  focussed on the ‘essential learning’ for the subject. This is delivered through a five week introduction, and for those who enjoy the work, a summer term devoted to Product Design. Students then understand the relevance of the subject, which has led to increased numbers opting to study Design and Technology at GCSE level and, hopefully, choosing a career in engineering, product design, architecture, project management, interior design etc.

Students follow the AQA syllabus at both D&T GCSE and Product Design at A level. This ensures sound progression routes, and open ended project choice at Year 13. We have seen wonderful products from students leading to exciting degree progression.

We have developed a curriculum which builds depth of knowledge and allows students to think independently and through peer collaboration, leading to an oversubscribed subject with great results.

For more information please contact Mr Richard Wood (Head of Faculty)

Art and Design (Graphics)

For more information please contact Mrs Cara Parsons (Second in Faculty)

Art and Design (Textiles)

For more information please contact Mrs Cara Parsons (Second in Faculty)

Food and Nutrition

Food and Nutrition gives students an opportunity to increase their knowledge of a range of topics concerning food issues including healthy eating, nutrition, how ingredients work together and more current issues such as organic foods and Fairtrade. We are keen to increase the students' cooking skills so that they are able to plan and produce healthy and interesting meals and food products.

Food Preparation and Nutrition is well recognised as an area where connections are made between many other subjects within the modern curriculum, and where students can develop their higher-level thinking skills and become more independent learners. The course sets out the knowledge, understanding and skills required to cook and apply the principles of food science, nutrition and healthy eating, whilst developing a sound base of practical skills and an understanding of the knowledge that underpins successful practical work. Students will be able to make connections between theory and practice to apply their understanding of food and nutrition to practical preparation.

“As part of their work with food, pupils should be taught how to cook and apply the principles of nutrition and healthy eating. Instilling a love of cooking in pupils will also open a door to one of the great expressions of human creativity. Learning how to cook is a crucial life skill that enables pupils to feed themselves and others affordably and well, now and in later life.”

(National curriculum)

KS3 (year 9)

We deliver a carousel curriculum at year 9 through our 4 current subjects, leading to students opting for one of these to complete in the summer term. Many students opt to carry on these subjects at GCSE level.

In the year 9 Food rotation of the carousel students will gain an insight into hygiene and safety, healthy eating, nutrition and why it is important, how to adapt recipes, and they will prepare and cook a range of dishes that use different food preparation skills. This rotation allows students to develop confidence and independence within the kitchen and also their theory based work.

GCSE (year 10 and 11)

At GCSE students follow the AQA Food and Nutrition course. In year 10, students focus on learning the theory content and refining their food preparation and practical skills. The topics covered in Food and Nutrition at GCSE are:

  • Food, nutrition, and health
  • Food science
  • Food safety
  • Food choice
  • Food provenance
  • Food preparation skills are integrated into each of these core topics.

In year 11, students then use their learnt knowledge on the theory content and combine with their practical skills to complete two non-examined assessments (NEAs). The NEA has been included as part of the assessment for this GCSE to allow students practical skills to be assessed, which could not be examined by the written paper alone. The NEA is assessed across two tasks:

  • NEA1 Food investigation
  • NEA2 Food preparation assessment

 Both NEA1 and NEA2 combined are worth 50% of the GCSE grade with the remaining 50% being a written exam paper at the end of year 11.

“This new GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition is an exciting and creative course which focuses on practical cooking skills to ensure students develop a thorough understanding of nutrition, food provenance and the working characteristics of food materials. At its heart, this qualification focuses on nurturing students' practical cookery skills to give them a strong understanding of nutrition.”

AQA exam board

For more information please contact:
Miss Steffi Stough (Teacher of Design and Technology)