Harris Academies
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Design and Technology

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.

Intent: Introduction, Vision and Philosophy

Our design and technology curriculum cover the four main areas of:


  1. Textiles
  2. Structures
  3. Mechanisms
  4. Food technology

The purpose of this document is to clarify the how, why, and what of design and technology teaching at Harris Primary Academy Benson (HPAB). This is to be used by staff to clarify expectations, highlight the resources that we have at our disposal, and to ensure that a high-quality design and technology curriculum is being taught to all. Design and Technology is a highly practical and creative subject, which will equip children with many of the life-skills that they will need for the future. Learning about how to fix things, build things, create and problem-solve are vital, and encompass some of the main skills that we want children to have when they leave Benson. Design and Technology is all about solving real problems, and as such, is taught in the context of lots of different disciplines; children will use software to render 3D images in computing, design and create settlements in geography, and learn about food and nutrition in science. They will use their design skills to help them create art, and in history, learn about how design and technology have helped shape the world. Exposing pupils to a range of key people and professionals from a variety of backgrounds and cultures enables them to understand how DT applies in the real world. Our intention is that many would be inspired to work in the field of design and technology. With the hope that they aspire to work in the field of design and technology: the advancement of technology will cause the emergence of careers that have not even been invented yet.

Implement: What does DT look Like at HPAB? Overview:

The teaching of design and technology at HPAB builds on the Early Learning Goals for Understanding the World, Technology, Exploring and using Media, and being Imaginative within the EYFS. 

Early Years Foundation Stage

During the EYFS pupils explore and use a variety of media and materials through a combination of child initiated and adult directed activities within outdoor and indoor activities. They have the opportunities to learn to:

  • Use different media and materials to express their own ideas
  • Use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about form, function and purpose
  • Make plans and construct with a purpose in mind using a variety of resources
  • Develop skills to use simple tools and techniques appropriately, effectively and safely
  • Select appropriate resources for a product and adapt their work where necessary
  • Cook and prepare food adhering to good health and hygiene routines

We use the National Curriculum in England 2014 framework for Design and Technology as the basis for our curriculum planning using the Design and Technology Association's 'Projects On A Page' documents.  Our aim is to make Design and Technology an enjoyable learning and challenging experience. Pupils undertake a Design and Technology project at least three times a year; this corresponds with Autumn, Spring and Summer. The project will link into some aspect that they are learning that term and takes place over the whole term.



Year 1

Year 2


Mechanisms – Moving Pictures

Mechanisms – Moving Vehicles (Roly poly toy)


Food – fruit kebab

Textiles – bendy bags, cutting and joining fabric


Textiles – Joining Fabrics

Structures – playground structures





Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Year 6


Food – Super Salad



Shell structures – Biscuit Packaging

Food – Seasonal Soup

Electrical system – Alarm Systems

Food – Bread



Textiles – Money Pouch


Electrical Systems – Night Light


Structures – Bird Box

Textiles – Carrier Belt



Mechanical systems - Puppets

Food – Healthy lunchtime Wrap

Electrical system – Alarm Systems

Mechanical systems – Cam Systems



Each term a new unit is taught which is signposted using a new unit cover in the DT book. The teaching of design and technology is guided via the use of our progression document. We aim to provide varied lessons, both in presentation and outcome, to allow children to fully immerse and engage with the subject.  Often, as Design and Technology might require a longer period than a 1-hour timetable-slot might allow, it might be taught as a double-period, or repeatedly over a few days, if, for example, children were making a large structure, or time-sensitive project.

Children design products with a purpose in mind and an intended user of the products. Food technology is implemented across the school with children developing an understanding of where food comes from, the importance of a varied and healthy diet, the importance of seasonality and how to prepare food affordably.

Impact: How will we judge the impact of the design and technology curriculum?

The design and technology curriculum are designed to have a positive impact on all pupils. We aim to for all pupils to be challenged. Using the design cycle – lessons are sequenced well and enables core knowledge and skills to be revisited and embedded. Core knowledge of each unit is supported by a knowledge organiser which details the key learning points, vocabulary and key questions. Assessment of children's learning in Design Technology is an ongoing monitoring of children's understanding, knowledge and skills by the class teacher, and their outcomes throughout lessons. Our teachers rely on a range of assessment tools to provide data on the knowledge and skills pupils have, their progress and their development points. This includes:

  • Assessment for learning through our ‘Knowing More and Remembering More’ starter sessions
  • Challenge tasks
  • Enquiry tasks
  • Standards of learning in books and products
  • Quizzing, multiple choice and end of unit questions
  • Pupil voice

Design Technology is also monitored by the subject leader throughout the year in the form of book monitoring, looking at outcomes and pupil interviews to discuss their learning and understanding and establish the impact of the teaching taking place.