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Alexandra Primary School

Design and Technology

Why is DT important?

Design and technology is a foundation subject in the National Curriculum. Design and Technology enables children to design, make and evaluate projects. All children will complete three DT projects a year. DT enables children not only to identify problems, evaluate existing products, plan, create and evaluate solutions, it enables them to work in teams, develop speaking and listening skills, develop hands on learning and a sense of ownership of a project, develop their own ideas and try things out. Developing evaluating skills is central to every project and every lesson in the planning, designing and making cycle.

Children are taught to recognise that design and technology are all around us, of the importance of technological advance and invention, and that they are the next generation of problem solvers.


Planning for Design and Technology is based on the DT associations projects on a page. A challenge is posed, existing products are evaluated, new techniques are taught through focused practical tasks, before engaging in designing, making and evaluating a product. Designers are thoughtfully selected to reflect our school community

The design process has the clear principles outlined in the DT star diagram below.


Learning is sequenced using the skills progression document developed by the DT association. 

Design and technology in the Early Years

During the EYFS the essential building blocks of design and technology are established. There are regular opportunities for children to carry out DT activities across all areas of learning. By the end of the EYFS children should be able to-

  • Construct with a purpose in mind, using a variety of resources.
  • Use simple tools and techniques competently and appropriately.
  • Build and construct with a wide range of objects, selecting appropriate resources and adapting their work where necessary.
  • Select the tools and techniques they need to shape, assemble and join the materials that they are using.

Children will be provided with a range of materials to construct with, they will have the opportunity to work together to develop and realise their creative ideas.Children will be taught different techniques for joining materials, using glues, tape and string. Children will be taught how to use materials safely, with care and precision, with the aim that children will develop independence to select the tools and materials they need to carry out an idea.

Overview of learning in KS1 & KS2

Year group

Autumn term

Spring term

Summer Term

Year 1

Construction and mechanisms

Moving part slider, lever or pop up.


Design and make a functional hand puppet.

Preparing fruit and vegetable

Design and make a healthy smoothie.

Year 2


wheels and axles

Create a fire engine toy

Free standing Structures

Create a survival den

Preparing fruit and veg

Healthy picnic food

Year 3

Mechanisms- levers and linkages

Christmas book / card

2D shape to 3D project

Design and make a bag

Healthy picnic food

Healthy wraps

Year 4

Mechanical systems

Pneumatic monsters

Circuits and switches

Design and make a torch

Shell structures and food.

Design a chocolate bar and packaging.

Year 5

Mechanical systems.

Design and make a toy balloon car-


CAMS / mechanical systems

Create a planet mobile

Bread making

Making festival bread-

Year 6

Design, make and evaluate a seasonal treat, mince pies,for our families.


Electrical systems

Create a security system to protect a treasured item.

Using CAD in textiles

Make an organiser bag.

Each year children have the opportunity to engage in food preparation and cooking in order to promote an awareness of nutrition and healthy eating, to contribute to their physical health and well being.

Meaningful links are made to other subject areas, for example science, history and computing to enhance children’s learning.


In design and technology, teachers assess children’s progress by making observations during lessons and discussions, using evidence in books and evaluating end products.  

Assessment is used to inform future lessons, ensuring children are supported and challenged appropriately.  Due to the practical nature of design and technology, evidence of tasks undertaken by children can be in the form of 2D displays, 3D models and photographs of their work.  At the end of a unit, children review their own work, focusing on an evaluation of the finished product and how effectively it meets the design brief.

Final end of year assessments are made using criteria that have been developed in line with the National Curriculum and the skills progression outlined by the DT Association, to identify the level at which the child is working. Children in Early Years are assessed within Expressive Arts and Design from the Early Years Framework.   Age related expectation levels are reported to parents at the end of each year.

Design and Technology is monitored through a variety of strategies, including: planning and book scrutiny, lesson observations and pupil voice activities. 

Our school values of excellence, nurture, community and exploration are at the core of our teaching and learning.