Technology Department: Statement of Intent

 The purpose of the courses within the subject & place in the wider curriculum.

Design and Technology is about providing opportunities for students to develop their capability, combining designing and making skills with knowledge and understanding in order to create quality products. The subjects that are available at Christ the King Catholic High School are designed to develop key motor skills as well as extend students understanding of the practical working environment. Throughout both Key Stages, students are encouraged to think independently as well as collaboratively. There is a large focus on the iterative design process which encourages students to develop their understanding by a ‘trial & error’ approach to improve their ability to working independently to improve outcomes. The Technology Department aims to build key skills from Year 7 through to Year 9 that will benefit all students moving forward regardless of whether they opt for a Technology subject at Key Stage 4.

At Key Stage 3 students have one double lesson each week. Years 7, 8 & 9 follow a carousel route within the Technology disciplines. Year’s 7 & 8 cover Resistant Materials, Food Technology, Ceramics & Art. In Year 9, students cover Resistant Materials, Food Technology and Ceramics. Students will cover a variety of topics across the two departments which provides the opportunity to develop key skills in all areas of creative design. Incorporating Ceramics into the curriculum provides students a wider skill set should they wish to continue into either Art or Technology in Key Stage 4.

In Resistant Materials, Year 7 students complete a ‘Graphics’ project which includes designing, making and evaluating and an introduction to basic materials. In Year 8, students complete a ‘Plastics’ project which incorporates design restrictions and problem solving. In Year 9 students complete a ‘Mechanisms’ project which encourages students to develop key building skills and understanding of what mechanisms are and their importance in everyday life. All projects are designed to stretch and challenge students of all abilities and develop design and practical skills safely within a workshop environment.

Within Food Technology, Year 7 students develops students’ practical skills in using basic and more specialist equipment safely, and understanding of basic ingredients. In Year 8, students look at the function of ingredients and recipe adaptation, and introduces more complex practical tasks to further develop their skill set within a catering environment. In Year 9, students study  ‘foods from around the world’, which enables a greater understanding of other countries and cultures. A large number of lessons are practically based and are designed to encourage students to become more independent and thereby take ownership of their own learning.

In Ceramics, Year 7, learn the principles of making clay slabs which includes how clay can be fired, glazed and recycled. The students collectively create a Quadtych set of tiles from their own design work. In Year 8, students further develop their existing slab skills and learn how clay can be joined and fixed to create a slab pot. Year 9 students combine all existing skills and learn how to develop a vessel using coil building which is the most difficult of the three skills to master and is designed to challenge the students from a designing and making perspective.

Within Art in Year 7, students develop the basic skills and key elements of Art such as line, tone, colour and texture, which builds upon previous skills and gain further understanding of new media and techniques. Students learn how to develop a project from concept toconclusion and how to continue to develop ideas and skills. In Year 8, students develop more advanced skills within the elements of depth, new technology and abstraction. Students in Year 9 develop an extended project from portraiture which is taught and assessed as a Key Stage 4 project to enable students to gain an insight into the requirements of GCSE standard ‘Art, Craft and Design’ course on offer at Key Stage 4.

Throughout Key Stage 3, a variety of extended learning tasks are provided develop and extend learning beyond the classroom. These tasks are completed for homework alongside each of the projects to enhance existing knowledge and encourage students to research materials, equipment, techniques, and other cultures, artists and skills. These tasks also have an emphasis on the environment and our responsibility to be more careful and considerate of our planet and other people, as well as understanding the importance of sustainability.

Key Stage 4

Design Technology is a practical based subject area which requires the application of knowledge and understanding when developing ideas, planning, producing products and evaluating them. The department currently offers two option choices at Key Stage 4, both options have 3 timetabled lessons per week, 2 practically based and 1 theory based.

WJEC TECHNICAL AWARD IN HOSPITALITY & CATERING LEVEL 1 & 2 is a practical subject consisting of 4 assessments, 3 of which are internally assessed using the format PLAN, PREPARE & COOK and 1 externally assessed 90 minute written examination. The theory lessons are based on how the Hospitality and Catering Industry fits into different demographics and students develop a comprehensive range of preparation, cooking and presentation skills in practical lessons. This course can lead onto Level 3 qualifications at college, as well as A-Levels and appropriate apprenticeships. This qualification is awarded on a Pass, Merit & Distinction format, where a Distinction*  can be awarded to students who achieve a Distinction in both practical and written areas.

Homework at Key Stage 4 is focused around creating comprehensive revision resources to assist students in preparation for their written examination in Year 11 as well as bringing the correct and/or appropriate ingredients for practical lessons, which is a requirement of the course.

This new Technical Award has proven very successful at Christ the King and students are achieving at or above target in most cases. A link to the course specification can be found here:

AQA GCSE DESIGN TECHNOLOGY 9 – 1  students will complete three mini projects over Year 10 to develop key skills and produce a high quality A3 coursework portfolio (approximately 20 pages which contains many aspects related to industry and a student must develop an understanding of these methods and convey them throughout their design work. Areas such as; researching, analysis of materials, design and development, planning, modelling and evaluating are just some of the areas covered in the students’ coursework. Once completed, a prototype of the student’s work is then manufactured based on the designs in their portfolio. In order to achieve maximum grades both the design portfolio and prototype must demonstrate that the student has really grasped the design process and understood the problem from a user centred approach. Assessment in both areas of study consists of 50% coursework with the other 50% on the final 2hr examination, which is designed to test students in all the areas of the course, particularly with a greater emphasis on Maths in Technology.  This course is designed to lead onto A-levels, Level 3 qualifications and Apprenticeships at further education institutes and is graded on the new (9-1) system.

Homework at Key Stage 4 is focused around creating comprehensive revision resources that will assist students when completing their written exam in Year 11.

This is a new course at Christ the King and students are engaging well with the subject, a link to the specification can be found here:

The Technology Department feature heavily in the schools Extended Learning Days, at Key stage 3 the Year 7’s complete a Healthy Eating Task designed to encourage: team work; a healthy attitude and an understanding of the importance of good nutrition and how it impacts their bodies, as well as product placement from a design perspective. Year 7’s also take part in a design and make task using nothing but recycled materials. This is designed to enhance their understanding of the problems we face with the waste we produce, specifically the 6 R’s, and how we can create a more sustainable future. Year 9 benefit from an option session where they receive an insight into their option choices whether Hospitality & Catering or Design Technology.

At Key Stage 4 students have a number of booster sessions to focus on key areas of their GCSE curriculum, these sessions are designed to enhance and extend existing learning.

Trips organised by the department are designed to give students an insight into Industry, whether it be to see a local employer within the manufacturing industry or see how the Hospitality and Catering Industry work in a real life scenario. Christ the King is always looking to develop links with local employers and industry, which is something that will continue to develop moving forward.

Students are Key Stage 4 will have access to lunchtime ‘catch up’ clubs which allow the students’ to use department facilities in order to progress or complete outstanding work to ensure they have the best opportunity to achieve their full potential.

The Technology department believes the diverse and varied opportunities that are available to students both in and out of the classroom will provide an excellent foundation with which to build on whether students choose to opt for a Technology based subject at Key Stage 4 or not.

The department encourages creativity, flair, independence, and a sense of pride in what is produced. Regardless of ability, each student will take ownership of their work and produce products of a high standard from concept to completion while developing essential life skills such as time management, team work, problem solving and the ability to communicate.