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Design Technology curriculum information

curriculum overview


The Design and technology National curriculum outlines the three main stages of the design process: design, make and evaluate. Each stage of the design process is underpinned by technical knowledge which encompasses the contextual, historical, and technical understanding required for each strand. Cooking and nutrition* has a separate section, with a focus on specific principles, skills and techniques in food, including where food comes from, diet and seasonality this is also linked to our Geography topics where appropriate.

The National curriculum organises the Design and technology attainment targets under five subheadings or strands:

  • Design
  • Make
  • Evaluate
  • Technical knowledge
  • Cooking and nutrition*

Lakefield’s Design and technology scheme has a clear progression of skills and knowledge within these five strands across each year group.

Pupils respond to design briefs and scenarios that require consideration of the needs of others, developing their skills in six key areas:

  • Mechanisms
  • Structures
  • Textiles
  • Food
  • Electrical systems (KS2) and
  • Digital world (KS2) – linked to computing and maybe organized in that subject as appropriate


Each of our key areas 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. Our scheme is a spiral curriculum, with key areas revisited again and again with increasing complexity, allowing pupils to revisit and build on their previous learning.

Strong subject knowledge is vital for staff to be able to deliver a highly effective and robust Design and technology curriculum. We use the Kapow Design Technology scheme.  Each unit of lessons includes multiple teacher videos to develop subject knowledge and support ongoing CPD.

Design Technology is blocked over the course of the year with week-to-week content being taught and design and make days arranged for larger projects and elements.


The curriculum is designed to enable children to evaluate, talk and make decisions about the quality of their outcomes and the improvements they need to make.  By participating in regular discussions about their decision-making process, children will know facts and key information about Design Technology. 

We assess the children’s knowledge and understanding against the learning objectives for each lesson and at the end of each unit there is a quiz and knowledge.  The children are provided with a knowledge organizer that is referred to at the start of the unit and throughout.

Children should leave Lakefield equipped with a range of skills to enable them to succeed in their secondary education and be innovative and resourceful members of society as well as meeting the end of key stage expectations as outlined in the national curriculum for design technology.

knowledge organiser

What is a ‘Knowledge Organiser’?

A Knowledge Organiser is a go-to document for a Unit of work: each one identifies the key information that children can refer to in lessons for a particular Unit of work, and it also acts as a tool to support children in retaining and retrieving knowledge for life-long learning.

How do they help children?

They provide the essential knowledge that children need to cover in the Unit, shared at the beginning so children know what they are going to be learning.
Knowledge Organisers help them to remember key dates, key people, key events, vocabulary and definitions and key concepts.
They can be used as a fun assessment tool to help remember the Units.
They improve their ability to remember.
Knowledge Organisers help them to develop other skills - e.g. when writing a nonfiction report, if they already have the knowledge they can focus on the writing skills.

How do they help parents?

Parents will have a better understanding of what the children are learning. They will allow parents to build on their knowledge at home and provide an easy tool for parents to quiz children at home (and children to quiz parents!)

The Knowledge Organisers are used to support the delivery of the curriculum and contain a list of technical vocabulary with definitions. Each organiser also has an accompanying quiz, which is regularly taken by the children in school to help children recall the key knowledge from each Unit of work.

Examples of the Knowledge Organisers can be seen to the right.

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