Coppice Valley Primary School

Learners for Life

Design & Technology


At Coppice Valley we offer children a DT curriculum which is accessible to all, maximising the development of every child’s ability. The National Curriculum is at the centre of our DT curriculum. We recognise the importance of DT in fostering imagination and inspiring creativity and taking risks. Our curriculum teaches children the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world. Children progressively build and apply a repertoire of knowledge and skills in order to design and make products. Their vocabularies increase as they are taught technical and precise language for the subject. Pupils learn to evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others. Our DT curriculum includes learning about the principles of nutrition and how to cook. DT affords our children the opportunity to extend their Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural understanding as they study great designs and designers of the past. We are committed to outdoor learning opportunities whenever we can. Having large grounds, we take full advantage of this to explore and create structures.

Values Led-Learning

Brave: Children challenge themselves to explore the visual, tactile and sensory qualities of materials and processes. They develop the resilience to try and try again. They will develop sharp observational skills with an attention to detail. Children will be reflective enough to evaluate their own and others’ work, reflecting on how to develop their skills further.

Curious: Children will be creative and imaginative. They will explore a wide variety of materials and techniques in appropriate ways. Children will learn about famous designers and technology through the ages.

Kind: Children will develop their spiritual, moral, social and cultural learning through the study of design and technology and its influence on history and society. They will help them to understand how the world has grown and changed over time, the diversity of people’s lives and the possibility for us to learn the lessons that will shape the future.

Curriculum at each phase

In EYFS, children explore and use a variety of media and materials through a combination of child initiated and adult directed activities. They explore the textures, movement, feel and look of different media and materials, manipulating and creating effects with these. Children construct with a purpose in mind using a variety of resources using simple tools and techniques competently and appropriately. Pupils learn to select appropriate resources for a product and adapt their work where necessary. Using observation of pupils’ skills and knowledge, staff plan provision and activities to help pupils progress in their learning.

In KS1, children are taught to use a range of resources, including IT, creatively to design and make products and use drawing, to develop and share their ideas, experiences and imagination. They use sketch books to develop their skills. They develop a wide range of DT knowledge and skills including:

  • Draw a simple picture of an intended design with basic labelling.
  • Choose appropriate materials and suggest ways of manipulating them to achieve a desired effect.
  • Select and explain choice of materials, sometimes with help.
  • Describe how an existing product works (i.e ‘The toy moves when I turn the handle’)
  • Talk about their own and others’ work identifying strengths and weaknesses.
  • Explain how closely finished products meet their design criteria and say what they could do better in the future.
  • Improve structures by making them stronger, stiffer and more stable.
  • Use wheels, axles, levers and sliders.
  • Measure and weigh food items using non-standard measures (e.g. cups and spoons)
  • Explain where the food they eat comes from (by referring to countries, counties, animals and plants)

In KS2, pupils are taught to develop their skills and increase their awareness of different kinds of design and technology. They use sketch books to design and use them to review and revisit ideas. They improve their mastery of DT techniques by revisiting these key skills over the key stage. Over KS2 pupils will:

  • Share ideas through words, labelled sketches and models, recognising that design have to meet a range of needs, including being fit for purpose.
  • Collect information from a number of different sources and use this information to inform design ideas in words, labelled sketches, diagrams and models keeping in mind fitness for purpose and the end user.
  • Use various sources of information, clarifying/sharing ideas through discussion, labelled sketches, cross sectional diagrams and modelling, recognising that ideas have to meet a range of needs.
  • Develop detailed criteria for designs for products aimed at particular individuals or groups, sharing ideas through cross-sectional and exploded diagrams, prototypes and pattern pieces.
  • Use CAD and CAM packages to suggest alternative design ideas and explain their ideas and intentions.
  • Check work as it develops and modify their approach in the light of progress.
  • Plan which materials will be needed for a task and explain why.
  • Name and select appropriate tools for a task and use them with precision.
  • Choose the best materials for a task, showing an understand of their working characteristics.
  • Cut internal shapes
  • Explain the form and function of familiar existing products.
  • Suggest improvements to products made and describe how to implement them (taking the views of others into account)
  • Test and evaluate products against a detailed design specification and make adaptations as they develop the product.
  • Explain how a design of a product has changed over time.
  • Describe how an individual in the field of design and technology has helped shape the world.
  • Select the most appropriate materials and frameworks for different structures, explaining what makes them strong.
  • Use cams or gears in their products.
  • Build models, incorporating switches to turn on and off.
  • Monitor and control more than one output, in response to changes.
  • Develop, try out and refine sequences of instructions to effectively monitor, measure and control events.
  • Make healthy eating choices and explain why.
  • Measure and weigh ingredients appropriately to prepare and cook a range of savoury dishes.
  • Combine food ingredients appropriately (e.g kneading, rubbing in and mixing)
  • Use appropriate tools and equipment, weighing and measuring with scales.
  • Explain what times of the year particular foods are in season.