Design Technology


At Bradshaw, design technology is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. Pupils are encouraged to use their creativity and imagination to design and make products for a real-life purpose and client. Pupils are taught the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an iterative process of designing and making. They work to solve real and relevant problems within a range of contexts, taking into consideration their own and others' needs, wants and values. Pupils develop research skills to explore the work of others including professional designers to broaden their knowledge of what a ‘good design’ means and to recognise the features of high-quality design and manufacture. Pupils learn to research for a purpose and use their research for their designs and to test the effectiveness of their products. Pupils are challenged to reflect on, analyse and critically evaluate their work and that of others to pursue and develop work that is meaningful to them. This enables them to develop an understanding of the impact of design technology on our daily lives and in an increasingly technological world. Pupils have an increasing knowledge of which tools, equipment and materials to use to make their products, building upon their previous experiences and understanding of relevant scientific and mathematical concepts. Pupils also manage risks well to safely and hygienically manufacture products.

At Bradshaw, we follow the National Curriculum and the teaching of design technology takes place through six disciplines.

  • Structures
  • Mechanical systems*
  • Textiles
  • Electrical systems*
  • Digital world*
  • Cooking and nutrition

Not all disciplines are taught in each year group, some are specific to particular year groups. The curriculum map stipulates the specific units taught in each year group. This is designed to ensure progression across year groups and learning within the units is broken down into small, sequenced chunks.

The art and design curriculum complements the design technology curriculum as both subjects work together to provide children with a range of skills within each discipline.

Kapow Primary underpins the teaching of the design technology curriculum. Through Kapow Primary’s Design and technology scheme, pupils respond to design briefs and scenarios that require consideration of the needs of others, developing their skills in the six key disciplines. Each discipline follows the design process (design, make and evaluate) and has a particular theme and focus from the technical knowledge or cooking and nutrition section of the curriculum.

The programme is a spiral curriculum, with key areas revisited repeatedly with increasing complexity, allowing pupils to revisit and build on their previous learning. Lessons incorporate a range of teaching strategies from independent tasks, paired and group work including practical hands-on, computer-based and inventive tasks. This variety means that lessons are engaging and inclusive to all pupils including those with additional or special educational needs or disabilities (A&SEND).

We have a strong focus on vocabulary acquisition. Pupils are introduced to new purposeful and ambitious vocabulary interconnecting both prior and new learning allowing pupil’s opportunity to describe what they hear and apply what they have learnt throughout their journey as a designer at Bradshaw, whilst learning more and remembering more.

A typical design technology lesson at Bradshaw includes the key elements of recap and recall in which pupils review previous learning. The learning objective and success criteria are shared outlining the intent of the lesson and Vital vocabulary is highlighted encouraging pupils to expand on their making links with prior learning with new learning. An attention-grabber activity introduces new learning and in the main event of a lesson teacher models and pupils have the opportunity to practise and apply learning. Lessons are sequential and planned to allow for multiple opportunities for pupils to practise new learning progressively, starting from ‘I do’, building on to ‘we do’ and allowing for practise with ‘you do’. The wrapping-up stage is an opportunity for pupils and teachers to review and assess their learning.


At Bradshaw, all pupils experience a wide range of carefully planned and differentiated design technology activities, allowing all pupils to have equal access to a rich, broad and balanced design technology curriculum. Teachers have a holistic understanding of pupils’ needs and development. They take relevant steps to remove barriers and make adaptations whilst regularly assessing and providing up-to-date and appropriate provisions to support pupils' learning needs. This includes; chunking learning into small steps, explicit instructions, additional scaffolds, modelling skills and new learning, adapted technology and equipment, and aids to support communication and language development. This ensures all pupils including those with A & SEND make strong progress year on year.


Learning is assessed throughout lessons to inform planning for subsequent lessons and units of work, allowing pupils to build on their knowledge, understanding and key skills. 

Teachers make use of a unit quiz at the beginning and end of each unit to gauge an understanding of pupils’ prior learning and learning and understanding attainment at the end of each unit. At the end of each unit teachers, complete an assessment form to identify pupils who are not meeting age-related expectations, assessing pupils against unit objectives.

Assessment data also supports the subject leader in highlighting key areas of improvement in the curriculum and identifying pupils who are consistently not meeting age-related expectations. The data is further analysed indicating any common threads or trends, which need attending to. Subject leader actions targets and areas of improvement at regular intervals. 


Curriculum Map

Vocabulary Map


Bradshaw DT Lesson