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Design and Technology

Early Years

The teaching of Design and Technology at St Joseph’s begins in Reception through Expressive Arts and Design. Based on the requirements of the EYFS framework and guided by Development Matters, children start to explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, share their creations, and talk about the processes they have used.

Curriculum Design and Progression

We aim to inspire pupils to design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values.

Each year, the children will study units which focus on developing specific technical skills, including cooking and understanding nutrition, which takes place in every year. Clear and well thought out sequences of learning with key assessment tasks ensure that new knowledge and skills build on what has been taught before. Discrete lessons are delivered with learning blocked to allow for clear progression in the acquisition of knowledge and the development of skills. Knowledge Organisers provide the structure to learning, specifying key knowledge and vocabulary that we want all children to understand and use fluently.

Through each unit, children research and evaluate existing products and use this information to inform the design, making and evaluation of their own product, based on a design brief to fulfil a particular purpose or need. 

Cooking and Nutrition

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.

At St Joseph’s, our children learn how to cook simple, mostly savoury meals which develop their technical knowledge and ability to use a range of techniques.

As they progress, children are able to follow recipes, know where our food comes from and apply the principles of nutrition and healthy eating.

Mastery of Key Concepts

At St Joseph’s, our curriculum is designed to develop our children’s mastery of four key areas of design and technology:

  • Mechanisms
  • Structures
  • Textiles
  • Electronics
  • Cooking and Nutrition

Key concepts have been identified for each stage of the design process to ensure they are revisited, embedded and progressively developed in each year group. These concepts are:




Planning and Preparation

Evaluating Existing Products

Selecting Tools


Making Products Work

Technical Knowledge

Practical Skills

Contexts, Uses and Purposes

Evaluating Own Ideas and Products


End Points

By the end of each unit, the knowledge and skills acquired and developed during this unit culminate in the children designing, making and evaluating their own original product.

Assessment and Monitoring

Teachers assess children at the end of each unit through end points. These assessments are used to check what children have learnt and remembered to ensure pupils have remembered what we intended them to learn.

Assessment data is submitted by the class teacher and monitored by the Subject Leader, who uses this data to ensure teaching is targeted and appropriate for each pupil, class and year group, as well as to feedback on progress to SLT.

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