What is DT?

Design and Technology (DT) is a creative and practical subject with a focus on designing, making and solving problems by undertaking a variety of theory and practical work. Sunnydown students will experience projects across 3D design (including resistant materials, graphics and product design), throughout Key Stage 3. At Key Stage 4 Sunnydown students are able to choose an academic route, working towards GCSE DT, or a non-academic option where they learn DIY and practical life skills. Sunnydown students learn a broad range of subject knowledge and skills and are encouraged to apply knowledge gained in other subject areas such as mathematics, science and art. We are passionate in encouraging the next generation of creative thinkers, problem solvers, makers and innovators.

Why do we teach DT at Sunnydown?

Our intent is to inspire Sunnydown students and allow them to gain confidence and inquisitiveness by working on relevant, appropriate and engaging design and practical skills that are needed to thrive independently in the modern world. The National Curriculum states that high-quality DT education makes an essential contribution to the creativity, culture, wealth and wellbeing of the nation.

Sunnydown students will develop the creative and technical experience needed to participate successfully in an increasingly technology focused world, whilst also being able to complete core practical tasks. They are able to experience developments in design and technology, as well as learning about the impact on individuals, society and the environment. DT at Sunnydown offers a unique aspect of physical and academic learning, using specialist tools, techniques, processes, equipment and machinery safely, including computer-aided design and manufacture.

Sunnydown students are also given the opportunity to learn DIY skills that will help enable them to look after a home or develop an employable skill thus developing essential life skills related to all aspects of independent living as stated in our curriculum policy.

How do we teach DT at Sunnydown?

Throughout KS3 Sunnydown students will complete a variety of DT projects in 6-week units, including 3D design, material technology and health and safety. During projects we build students’ technical knowledge; designing skills and development of ideas; practical skills and understanding of processes and techniques; and evaluation of work. Many of these projects result in physical products which students are encouraged to take home.

To facilitate this we have a specialist workshop equipped with tools and machinery; CAM (computer aided manufacture) area with 3D printers and a laser cutter and each student is able to use their own Chromebook to develop designs and work on CAD (computer aided design) This provides Sunnydown students with a safe and controlled working environment suited to the unique aspects of the subject and allowing them to create work appropriate for their individual ability levels..

How does DT change at KS4?

Sunnydown students are able to study DT at GCSE or a non examined DIY option.

The DT GCSE option allows students to develop their skills as a designer and maker through a variety of projects each with a topic or theme culminating in an externally set piece of coursework using themes selected by the exam board. Within these projects students build more focused skills with an emphasis on the design process and accuracy of making. The course work consists of a portfolio of creative responses and outcomes through the design work, investigating materials and components, development and refinement of ideas, research of existing products as well as evaluating and self-assessment.

The DIY option enables Sunnydown students to learn practical life skills from wallpapering to brick laying. Our DIY workshop allows students to create their own work space and build on their skills throughout KS4. There are also a selection of projects on the school grounds where students can learn landscaping and building skills that also benefit the school community. Each topic is assessed and quizzed at the end to check for learning and AQA unit awards can be achieved by demonstrating ability.

Which exam board syllabus do we study at KS4?

Students studying GCSE DT at Sunnydown School follow the AQA Design and Technology 8552 specification.

KS4 AQA Design & Technology


Curriculum Plans