Design and Technology

At Avening Primary School, we see Design and Technology as a key subject for developing creativity and problem-solving, as well as critical thinking and practical skills.

'Design is thinking made visual.’ (Saul Bass)

 ‘Design and technology is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. Using creativity and imagination, pupils design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. They acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on disciplines such as mathematics, science, engineering, computing and art. Pupils learn how to take risks, becoming resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable citizens. Through the evaluation of past and present design and technology, they develop a critical understanding of its impact on daily life and the wider world. High-quality design and technology education makes an essential contribution to the creativity, culture, wealth and well-being of the nation.’ (National Curriculum in England, September 2013)

 Our Curriculum Intent for Design and Technology

Click here for our Design and Technology Policy 2021

Our overarching aim for Design and Technology is to promote a high level of understanding of practical skills, knowledge and processes. 

In line with the National Curriculum, we aim to ensure that all children:


  • develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world
  • build and apply a repertoire of knowledge, understanding and skills in order to design and make high-quality prototypes and products for a wide range of users
  • critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others
  • understand and apply the principles of nutrition and learn how to cook.


The Design and Technology curriculum at Avening Primary School is built around the statutory content of the 2014 National Curriculum and the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. Design and Technology is a foundation subject; the National Curriculum programmes of study require children to be taught to design, make, evaluate and develop technological knowledge, as well as how to cook and apply the principles of good nutrition and healthy eating.

 At our school, the content of the curriculum is taught around a rolling programme of cross-curricular themes. Each theme has a guide for time spent on Deign and Technology, as well as the other subjects, to ensure that the whole curriculum is broad and balanced, and that enough time is spent building design skills throughout the school. Within each theme, teachers decide when Design and Technology skills are best taught. Lessons may be weekly, or teachers may decide to ‘choreograph’ a more creative and cohesive pathway through the content, where learning may be blocked.

 The school has a carefully planned progressive scheme of work which develops all aspects of the Design and Technology curriculum, with food technology featuring in every year.  

 An overview of knowledge and skills taught is below:



Year A

Year B







Key Stage 1



Food – preparing fruit and vegetables


Mechanisms – wheels and axles

(double unit)

Dens and Dandelions:

Textiles – templates and joining techniques


Fire and Ice:

Structures – free-standing structures

Saints, dragons and a Castle:

Mechanics – sliders and levers

Animal Magic:

Food – preparing fruit and vegetables



The Savage Stone Age:

Structures – shell structures using computer aided design


Electrical Systems (STEM workshop)

Rotten Romans:

Mechanical systems – levers and linkages


Food technology

Tour de France:

Mechanical systems - pneumatics

Feeling Fit:

Food technology


Mighty Olympians:

Textiles – 2D shape to 3D product






Mechanical systems - cams

Vicious Vikings:

Structures – frame structures

We are the Future:

Textiles – combining different fabric shapes


Food technology

Star Gazers:

Electrical systems – monitoring and control (STEM workshop)

Hola Mexico:

Food – celebrating culture and seasonality

Doctor, Doctor:

Food technology




Within the EYFS, the specific area of ‘Expressive Arts and Design’ encompasses a range of early design and technology skills and knowledge.

 In the Revised Early Years Foundation Stage, expressive arts and design involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.


Design and technology reflects the three characteristics of effective teaching and learning in the Early Years Foundation Stage:

  • playing and exploring - children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’
  • active learning - children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements
  • creating and thinking critically - children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things


Continuous provision in the EYFS is resourced and facilitated to ensure that opportunities for early design and technology skills and knowledge are developed.