Design and Technology (DT)
“You can't use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” ― Maya Angelou
Our overall intention is to nurture and develop our six qualities of learning which enable all children to shine…for life! We nurture and encourage creative, kind and resilient learners who are reflective, inquisitive and determined in all they do. Our intention is for learners at St Levan to know more and remember more in DT by designing products, problem solving (as these occur during design) and developing the skills and expertise required to use different tools and materials.
To think like designers, learners at St Levan focus on our three subject specific characteristics which are:
- I can design products from concept to evaluation
- I can solve problems
- I develop my skills and expertise with different tools and materials
These three characteristics are woven throughout our DT curriculum and are built upon as children progress through the school. This ensures that children acquire the skills and knowledge they need to succeed, couched in concepts and language with which they have already become familiar.
We provide an engaging, characterful and balanced curriculum for all.
Our inclusive curriculum is carefully planned to allow for progress for all pupils in our two mixed age classes. We recognise the challenges of teaching a progression within a subject to a mixed age class and, having undertaken our own research and consulted subject specialists and organisations, developed our own pedagogy and created what we believe is the best fit for our setting. With a commitment to the removal of barriers to learning and participation, we offer high quality teaching and appropriate differentiation to meet the needs of all. Using our rolling programme (see our Curriculum Offer page), we teach DT through termly topics and use a range of technical skills to design, make and evaluate products for real life scenarios. We also learn about cooking and nutrition to support our understanding of how to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.
Please find below our DT Curriculum Progression documents along with how we adapt our curriculum to suit the needs of all learners:
We interconnect learning opportunities with an enriched environment to promote a love of learning and the outdoors.
Design and Technology at St Levan is taught through a range of topics to make both the topic and the sense of purpose more real for children. They understand that an end product has to be fit for purpose and requires testing to see whether it is, for example, waterproof or load bearing.
By the end of Key Stage 2 children from St Levan are confident to express ideas for creations, plan construction, gather materials and use tools appropriately. They can work individually or collaboratively on larger projects such as our willow sculpture for the Lafrowda festival in nearby St Just. Learners invariably experience patience, perseverance and frustration during the problem solving/construction phase and learn how to adapt in order to succeed and reflect on the finished product.
We ensure children are supported within a kind and caring community which enables them to progress and flourish.
At St Levan, we use assessment in three different ways across all subjects.
Assessment for learning (AfL)
This assessment is formative, ongoing and informs classroom practice and future planning. Through careful observation, listening and questioning, teachers glean what learners know and can do and plan next steps accordingly. For example, in DT, if a child in Year Four is able to refer to their design criteria when evaluating their finished product, a next step could be for this pupil to critically evaluate their original design and suggest specific areas for development.
Assessment as learning (AaL)
This assessment is about how pupils self-regulate their own learning and develop metacognitive skills. Through structured peer and self-assessment activities, pupils understand their own needs as a learner and reflect on their own next steps. By taking ownership of their own learning, this can help pupils to know more and remember more. For example, in DT, pupils may self-assess against their WALTs and WILFs and highlight what they can do or, more specifically, assess their finished product/design against design criteria. An example of this is a Year Two pupil completing a model of their hand puppet design and finding that the stapling was so much fun that they stapled all the way around. A key component of the design was that a hand could fit inside the puppet, so this was a useful learning opportunity- thank goodness we made a model first!
Assessment of learning (AoL)
This assessment is summative, at the end of a topic and, in DT, pupils will produce some sort of finished product, for example, a pair of sunglasses for Postman Pat to wear so that he can go on holiday with Jess the cat.
We aim for our children to be resilient, creative and kind individuals who are determined, inquisitive and reflective learners.