Skip to content ↓
Higham Lane School

Higham Lane School

Design & Technology

Design & Technology is a subject that encourages creativity, imagination and analytical thinking. Across all discinplines of the subject, students will be involved in a range of design, research, practical, experimental and evaluation tasks that reflect design and technology in the society we live in. Students will work with a range of different materials and processes, as well as developing their knowledge and understanding of more complex design principles.

Our curriculum is closely mapped against the National Curriculum Programmes of Study and we have had significat funding in recent times to develop our Computer Aided Design and Manufacture facilities. In Key Stage 3, students will undertake activities working with food, fabrics, metals, polymers, timbers, electronics, papers and boards. Students then have the opportunity to choose from Product Design (specialising in one material, e.g. timbers or fabrics) or Food Preparation & Nutrition as an optn to study in Key Stage 4.

In 2018, 52% of students studying Resistant Materials achieved a Grade C or above with 15% achieving an A*/A grade. 77% of Textiles students achieved A*-C with 35% achieving A*/A. In Product Design, 52% achieved A*-C with 9% A*/A. In Food Preparation & Nutrition, 74% achieved 9-7 with 24% 9-4.

The department is always open at lunchtimes for students to work on the computers, for example, to prepare for their Controlled Assessments. Specific intervention and support takes place after school on Thursdays for identified students, but students are also encouraged to attend on a voluntary basis. A Key Stage 3 design challenge also runs at the same time.

Year 7

Year 7 students will undertake six modules, all six weeks in length. Students will keep the same Design & Technology teacher for the whole year. The six modules are:

Working with Fabrics and Fibres

Students learn, through samples and experimentation, of different fabrics and SMART materials, their properties, uses and structures. Students will also use 2D Design to create a stencil, the heat press for sublimation printing, and sewing machines for seams and applique.

Working with Polymers

Students learn about different polymers and will create a mould using the vacuum former, a layered key ring using tensol cement, and a name card using the laser cutter and strip heater.

Food Preparation

Students will create a range of healthy, balanced meals that fit in with the Eatwell guide. They will develop a clear understanding of hygiene and how to stay safe in a kitchen, along with developing their knife skills.

Food Nutrition

This module focuses on nutrition; how it can be included in the diet, why we need it and health implications based on poor life choices. Students will also learn how to use the oven safely.

Working with Metals

Students will understand different metals including ferrous and non-ferrous. They will use the laser cutter to create a mould for their pewter pendant.

Papers and Boards

Students will learn about a variety of different papers and boards; their functions, uses and properties. Students will create a prototype using these materials.

Year 8

As in Year 7, Year 8 students will undertake six modules, all six weeks in length. Students will remain with their teacher for the year. The six modules are:

Working with Fabrics and Fibres

Students will experiment with a range of SMART materials, and use their machine skills to produce a fully lined phone or tablet case that includes one SMART element; e,g. phosphorescent or thermos chromic.

Food Preparation & Nutrition 1

Students will investigate into raising agents, including yeast, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and whisking. They will conduct experiments in a scientific way and also produce a pizza, batch of scones and mini Victoria sponges.

Food Preparation & Nutrition 2

Students will investigate eggs in this module, including the different ways they can be used, as well as their nutritional content. Students will learn about egg provenance and animal welfare too.

Working with Timbers

Students will manufacture a mobile phone stand using timbers. They will research into the different types available and their properties and uses.

Control Technology

Students will learn about electronic circuits and components using the program Crocodile Clips. From this, they will create a product that applies their knowledge of electronics.

Design Challenge

Students will analyse the work of an existing designer and then design a product in the style of this designer. Their chosen solution will then be prototyped using a range of materials.

Year 9 New GCSEs

GCSE Design & Technology: Studentswill learn the `core’ topic areas of textiles, timbers, metals, papers and boards, electronics and polymers. They will also focus on one of these areas as an `Area of Specialism’.

GCSE Food Preparation & Nutrition: Students will cover a variety of modules about scientific food processes and commodities, such as protein, dairy, fruit and vegetables.

Year 10

GCSE Food Preparation & Nutrition: Students will cover a variety of modules about scientific food processes and commodities, such as carbohydrates, fats and sugars.

GCSE Product Design: CAD/CAM projects—a range of design and problem solving activities to develop analytical thinking. Students will also use a range of manufacturing processes, as well as completing a trial controlled assessment.

Year 11

All GCSE students will be working on controlled assessments and preparing for the written exam.

KEITH TODD, Subject Leader for Design & Technology