Design & Technology


Head of Department: Tom Hordern

Staff Contact Details:

Design and Technology is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. Using creativity and imagination, students design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts. Pupils at Christ’s, through the evaluation of past and present Design and Technology, develop a critical understanding of its impact on daily life and in the wider world.

The Department consists of a well-resourced Textiles room which includes 14 sewing machines and a computerised embroidery machine, pattern cutting tables and a small suite of computers. A Food Technology specialist kitchen with multiple cooking
stations. And our Resistant materials workshop offering a well equipped workshop classroom and an adjoining specialist cutting workshop and student project space. Specialist equipment such as a vacuum former and a laser cutter regularly allow pupils access to machinery that realises ambitious project goals. The Technology departments. Teaching rooms are supported by the Faculties Technicians. The Department also offers Graphics at KS3 in our specialist Art rooms and computer suites.


Key Stage 3

Through a variety of creative and practical activities, pupils are taught the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an interactive process of designing and making. They work in a range of domestic and local contexts for example: the home; health; leisure, and culture, and industrial contexts for example: engineering; manufacturing; construction; food; energy; and fashion. Students can expect three pieces of Homework per practical project in Technology. [1] 

Design and Technology aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • 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

Pupils at Christ’s are taught to:

  • Use research and exploration, such as the study of different cultures, to identify and understand user needs
  • Identify and solve their own design problems and understand how to reformulate problems given to them
  • Develop specifications to inform the design of innovative, functional, appealing products that respond to needs in a variety of situations
  • Develop and communicate design ideas using annotated sketches, detailed plans, 3-D and mathematical modelling, oral and digital presentations and computer-based tools
  • Select from and use specialist tools, techniques, processes, equipment and machinery precisely, including computer-aided manufacture
  • Analyse the work of past and present professionals and others to develop and broaden their understanding
  • Investigate new and emerging technologies and test, evaluate and refine their ideas and products against a specification, taking into account the views of intended users and other interested groups
  • Understand how more advanced electrical and electronic systems can be powered and used in their products for example: circuits with heat; light; sound and movement as inputs and outputs
  • Understand and apply the principles of nutrition and health
  • Cook a repertoire of predominantly savoury dishes so that they are able to feed themselves and others a healthy and varied diet
  • Become competent in a range of cooking techniques, for example: selecting and preparing ingredients; using utensils and electrical equipment; applying heat in different ways; using awareness of taste, texture and smell to decide how to season dishes and combine ingredients; adapting and using their own recipes.

Pupils in years 7, 8 and 9 are taught Design Technology weekly. Assessment takes place in formal written comments lead by the department’s teachers and less formal methods of reflective feedback in class critiques and peer feedback. Questioning is a key assessment tool for the department and is fundamental to the creative progress.

Topics Covered

  Resistant Materials Food Technology Textiles
Year 7
  • Health & Safety
  • Basic hand tool skills
  • Basic machinery skills (scroll saw)
  • Introduction to various stages of design
  • become confident in the cooking area;
  • develop an understanding of the 4C’s to Good Food Hygiene;
  • learn about the Eatwell Guide and the 8 tips for healthy eating
  • learn a  range of fruit and vegetable preparation techniques
  • learn about the provenance of fruit and vegetables (and how seasonability affects price and availability)
  • learn about the process of enzymic browning
  • learn the process of bread making and the science behind fermentation
  • Learn about the main nutrients provided by the eatwell guide food groups.
  • learn and apply chemical, biological and mechanical raising agents
  • learn how cooking methods can affect nutrient content
  • Health & safety in Textiles.
  • Basic hand sewing skills.
  • Development of drawing skills.
  • Working from a pattern.
  • Introduction to the sewing machine.
Year 8
  • Development of hand tool skills
  • Introduction to I.T skills – computer aided design (CAD) computer aided manufacture (CAM)
  • Introduction to isometric drawing
  • Pupils will deepen their knowledge and understanding of food and nutrition;
  • Pupils will further develop food preparation and cooking techniques;
  • Pupils will deepen their knowledge of consumer food and drink choice;
  • Pupils will be able to apply their knowledge to make informed choices;
  • Pupils will develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently;
  • learn the process of sauce making (all in one method) and the science behind gelatinisation
  • Pupils will build and apply a repertoire of knowledge, understanding and skills in order to design and make high quality products for a wide range of users;
  • Pupils will evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others.

Fantastic Plastic Project

  • Consolidation of Health & safety in Textiles.
  • Development of machine and hand sewing skills.
  • Creating a pattern from scratch.
  • Understanding of darts.
  • Relief printing technique.
  • Inserting lining.
  • Development of drawing skills.
  • Recycling of plastics and understanding the term upcycle.
Year 9
  • Further development of hand tool skills, I.T skills and isometric drawing
  • Introduction to working with plastic
  • Food, nutrition and health
  • 2. Food science
  • 3. Food safety
  • 4. Food choice
  • 5. Food provenance

Banners and Pennants Project

  • Consolidation of Health & safety in Textiles.
  • Development of machine and hand sewing skills.
  • Creating a pattern from scratch.
  • Development of decoration and


To find out more about homework requirements, please visit the Homework section of this website.

Key Stage 4 - GCSE

The department ensures exciting and creative pathways are delivered to push outcomes and that the subject specific content reflects best practice nationally. Pupils have every opportunity to work in the department outside of lessons in numerous extra-curricular activities; homework is set weekly and is practical or research based.

Food Technology GCSE involves learning a range of skills, mini projects on cakes; bread; pastry and cook-chill. Researching about ingredients; authentic foods and farming in relation to the environment and traceability.

Resistant Materials GCSE is broken down in Year 10 into three main projects that allow pupils to experiment with ideas while researching relevant construction processes, and material properties. In Year 11 students will produce a final product in accordance with the design briefs set by the exam board.

The Textiles Art GCSE course aims to foster in students a broad understanding of the nature of Art and Design through Textiles. Students build on areas of experience covered in years 7-9 as well as learning new skills in order to present possible solutions for their ideas in increasingly independent study. 

Topics Covered

  • In depth look at various stages of design:
    • Research – task analysis, specification, target market
    • Development – initial ideas, development of ideas, modelling, prototypes, CAD, final design
    • Making – technique, quality control, industrial practices
    • Evaluation – product testing, analysis of outcome
  • GCSE work runs in accordance with AQA specifications

Food Technology

  • Food, nutrition and health
  • Food science
  • Food safety
  • Food choice
  • Food provenance
  • GCSE work runs in accordance with AQA specifications


The Textiles Department offers an exciting GCSE which encourages personal, imaginative and modern approaches to design. The Textiles course is a very creative course that allows students to develop a range of skills that will help them to communicate their design ideas. Students will explore different themes and learn about a wide range of creative processes and materials: drawing, painting, and photography, a variety of printmaking techniques, knitting, embroidery, computer-aided design, pattern cutting, garment construction and fashion illustration. Analysing the work of existing artists and designers and visits to galleries are an integral part of the course.

To find out more about homework requirements at GCSE, please visit the Homework section of this website.

Key Stage 5 - A level product design

Product Design students will investigate historical, social, cultural, environmental and economic influences on Design and Technology, whilst enjoying opportunities to put their learning into practice by producing prototypes of their choice. This creative and thought-provoking course gives students the practical skills, theoretical knowledge and confidence to succeed in a number of careers. Especially those in the creative industries. Students will gain a real understanding of what it means to be a Designer, alongside the knowledge and skills sought by higher education and employers. At Christ's we follow the AQA examination board syllabus.

Homework will involve both research and practical tasks, it is expected that for each lesson studied 1 hour of homework will also be completed. Students are expected to demonstrate an interest in Design outside of school, actively visiting galleries and workshops and exploring the work of other Designers. Students have every opportunity to work in the Departments workshops outside of lessons in numerous extra-curricular activities.


Technical principles:

  • physical and mechanical properties (working characteristics)
  • product function
  • aesthetics
  • cost
  • manufacture and disposal

Designing and making principles:

  • Historical influences
  • Social influences
  • Cultural influences
  • Environmental influences
  • economic influences
  • Designers and their work

The knowledge and skills gained in Year 12 is then put into practice in Year 13 when students undertake an extensive major design project, offering students the chance to write their own context and brief and to make their ideas a reality. Assessment in Year 12 and 13 involves both practical NEAs and formal written examination papers.


Christ's Art and Technology department has a proud history of involvement in local and national design competitions and awards. Students work from all stages is entered annually. Numerous opportunities are available through clubs and afterschool workshops. The department has good links with other STEM subjects in its extra-circular provision.


Careers or course list for Design and Technology pupils after A Levels:

ArchitectArchitectural technician or technologistArt editorArt gallery curatorArts administratorArt therapistBookbinder or print finisher, Catering manager, Ceramics designer-maker, Chef, Costume designerDesign engineerDressmakerExhibition designerFashion designerFine artistFlorist, Food nutritionist, Footwear designer,Furniture designerGlassmakerGraphic designerHat designer or milliner, Health worker, IllustratorInterior designerJewellery designer-makerLandscape architect,Make-up artistMuseum assistantMuseum curatorPattern cutterPhotographerPhotographic stylist/technicianPre-press operatorPrinting administratorProduct designerProp makerSet designerSewing machinistSignwriterTailorTattooistTextile designerTextiles production managerUpholstererVisual merchandiserWeb designer




Exam Board: AQA Design and Technology – Resistant Materials

Course Code: 8552


Past papers:


Exam Board: AQA Design and Technology – Product Design

Course Code: 7552


Past papers:

Food KS4

Exam Board: AQA Food Preparation and Nutrition

Course Code: 8585


Past papers:

Textiles KS4

Exam Board: OCR Art and Design: Textiles Art

Course Code: J174


Past papers:


Useful subject related websites:


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