Design & Technology - The Christ's School - Richmond -

Design & Technology


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. 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 has a well resourced Textiles room which includes 14 sewing machines and a computerised embroidery machine, pattern cutting tables and a small suite of computers. Textiles is taught by Mrs Busby and Ms Perkins, both are subject specialists. GCSE Textiles is extremely successful, last year 100% of our students achieved A* to C grades and our A*/A grades exceeded predictions.

Food Technology is taught in a large specialist room by Ms Conteh, she is a subject specialist and is supported by a Food Technician. Last year 74% of pupils achieved A* to C grades in Food Technology.

Resistant materials offer a large well equipped workshop classroom and an adjoining specialist cutting working workshop and student project area. Specialist equipment such as a vacuum former and a laser cutter regularly allow pupils access to machinery that realises ambitious project goals. Mr Bird, a subject specialist, is pleased to be offering GCSE Resistant Materials for the first time this academic year. He is supported by the Faculties Technician Ms Foxen.


Key Stage 3

Through a variety of creative and practical activities, pupils are taught the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an iterative 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.

The National Curriculum for 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 modeling, 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 on a rota system with Resistant Materials, Textiles and Food. They have a double lesson and a single lesson over a 10 week period. Homework is set every week when it is relevant to the classwork tasks.  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

Phone Holder Project

  • Introduction to Textiles
  • 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 embellishment techniques.
  • Development of drawing skills


Key Stage 4 - GCSE

Technology options are taught 3 lessons a week at GCSE. Food Technology, Textiles Technology and Resistant Materials courses are offered. 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 GCSE course involves learning a range of decorative and construction techniques, researching designers and makers, understanding how fabrics are made and tested and what impact textiles has on the wider world. Pupils study a range of projects from interior products to fashion garments and in year 11 produce a final project for their GCSE controlled assessment.

Pupils are assessed regularly against the AQA Exam board requirements and the department has a well established assessment policy using one to one discussions about progress alongside more formal written feedback.


Topics Covered

Resistant Materials:

  • 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, 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.


Key Stage 5 / Sixth Form

The department plans to offer all Technology GCSE options as A Levels shortly.


Year 10 Resistant Materials GCSE pupils are involved in Design Ventura – the Design Museum's award winning, national design and enterprise competition. A live brief challenges young people to design a new product for the Design Museum Shop. Design Ventura offers participants opportunities to visit the Design Museum and to encounter experts from design and business online or in person. Competition prizes include the chance to see your work exhibited at the museum, support from experts to develop your idea and one winning idea will be developed and sold in the Design Museum Shop.

Textiles run Concept to Catwalk - a competition supported by the Mayor and Central St Martins, aimed at ambitious young fashion designers.

GCSE Textiles groups make regular visits to The Knitting and Stitching Show and New Designers Fashion Show at the Islington Design Centre to inform their projects and design ideas.

Food Technology run a variety of after school activities for competitions such as "Let’s get cooking", which is funded by the health lottery and Masterchef taster classes. Trips to Real food festival and the BBC Good Food Eat Well Show are offered to GCSE groups.


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 websites:

Useful subject related websites:

  • 12:57 PM - 16th August, 2018 Lots of very happy students as Christ's celebrates best ever A Level Results Read more Read more
  • 11:09 AM - 21st July, 2018 We are fundraising for a Grand Piano for music department. Take a look at our justgiving page: Read more
  • 11:08 AM - 21st July, 2018 End of term and farewell to some of our wonderful staff. Moving tribute paid to Mrs Blair who is heading off for a well earned retirement after 27 years of inspirational service. 👏🏻 Read more
  • 09:00 AM - 20th July, 2018 Please find below the link from Vicki Sharp, our official school photographer, for purchasable photos taken at the Sports Awards Evening on Wednesday 18th July. Read more
  • 08:49 PM - 18th July, 2018 We are very proud of the work that does. Lovely to hear from a visitor to the school! Read more