School Logo

Welcome to Chiltern Primary School

‘Making Learning Irresistible’

Google Translate

Design Technology

Curriculum Leader: Grace Horne

Miss Horne is our DT Leader and is responsible for this curriculum area. This means ensuring we teach an ambitious curriculum, supporting our teachers to implement our curriculum through high-quality lessons and checking that lessons are helping our children to know more, remember more and do more.


At Chiltern Primary School, our mission is to make learning irresistible for every child. We prioritize positive relationships and believe in championing every child, fostering an inclusive and supportive learning environment. As we follow the 2014 National Curriculum in England, our approach to the teaching and learning of Design and Technology reflects our commitment to providing a high-quality education.


The Importance of Design and Technology

Design and Technology is a vital subject that enables students to develop their creativity, problem-solving skills, and practical abilities. It encourages children to think critically, collaborate with others, and apply their knowledge in real-world scenarios. Through engaging in Design and Technology, our students gain confidence, perseverance, and a range of technical skills that will serve them well in their future studies and careers.


Our Curriculum - Curriculum Maestro

To ensure a comprehensive coverage of the National Curriculum, we use a program called "Curriculum Maestro" by Cornerstones. This carefully designed resource supports our teachers in delivering the breadth of Design and Technology topics specified by the national curriculum. With Curriculum Maestro, we can plan and deliver stimulating and challenging lessons to meet the needs of all our pupils.


Integration and Cross-Curricular Opportunities

At Chiltern Primary School, we believe in creating meaningful connections between subjects to enhance learning experiences. Design and Technology naturally lends itself to cross-curricular opportunities. We integrate Design and Technology projects with subjects such as Science, Mathematics, Art, and Computing, enabling students to make connections and see the relevance of their learning across different disciplines. This approach also helps to foster a broader understanding of the world and encourages students to apply their knowledge and skills in a variety of contexts.


Practical and Innovative Learning Experiences

In Design and Technology, practical hands-on experiences are central to our teaching approach. We provide our students with regular opportunities to engage in practical tasks, allowing them to develop practical skills and techniques. Whether it is constructing prototypes, exploring different materials, or evaluating existing products, our students learn through active participation.

We encourage innovation and problem-solving by setting open-ended design challenges that allow students to think critically and explore multiple solutions. Through these activities, we nurture their creativity, develop their ability to design and evaluate products, and encourage them to apply their knowledge to real-world problems.


Assessment and Monitoring Progress

To ensure that our students are making progress in Design and Technology, we carry out continuous assessment and monitoring. This enables us to identify individual strengths and areas for development, providing targeted support and tailored interventions. Assessment takes various forms, including teacher observations, project work, presentations, and peer evaluations. We value the feedback from our students, which helps us focus on their progress and address their specific needs.


Engaging Parents and the Wider Community

At Chiltern Primary School, we recognize that education is a partnership between home and school. We actively involve parents and the wider community in our Design and Technology curriculum. We believe that by engaging parents in their child's learning, we can enhance the learning experience and provide continuity of support. We organize workshops, exhibitions, and events to showcase our students' achievements and involve parents in their learning journey.


In conclusion, at Chiltern Primary School, Design and Technology is an integral part of our curriculum. We provide a rich and engaging learning environment that allows our students to develop their creative thinking, problem-solving skills, and practical abilities. Through cross-curricular opportunities, practical experiences, and continuous assessment, we ensure that our students become independent and confident learners, ready to excel in the ever-changing world around them.

Our children will be taught to...

Year R

  • Name and explore a range of everyday products and begin to talk about how they are used. 

  • Follow rules and instructions to keep safe. 

  • Identify products that use electricity to make them work. 

  • Explore, build and play with a range of resources and construction kits with wheels and axles. 

  • Create collaboratively, share ideas and use a variety of resources to make products inspired by existing products, stories or their own ideas, interests or experiences.

  • Use digital devices to take digital images or recordings of their creations to share with others. 

  • Construct simple structures and models using a range of materials. 

  • Choose and explore appropriate tools for simple practical tasks. 

  • Adapt and refine their work as they are constructing and making. 

  • Recognise that it is possible to change and alter their designs and ideas as they are making them.

  • Select appropriate materials when constructing and making. 

  • Follow instructions, including simple recipes, that include measures and ingredients. 

  • Suggest healthy ingredients that can be used to make simple snacks. 

  • Begin to identify the origins of some foods.

Year 1

In the autumn term of Year 1, children begin to learn about structures in the project Shade and Shelter before designing and making a shelter. In the spring term project Taxi!, they learn the term ‘mechanism’ and assemble and test wheels and axles. In the summer term, children begin to learn about food sources in the project Chop, Slice and Mash and use simple preparation techniques to create a supermarket sandwich.

Year 2

In the autumn term of Year 2, children learn more about food in the project Remarkable Recipes, where they find out about food sources, follow recipes and learn simple cooking techniques. In the spring term project Beach Hut, children develop their knowledge of structures further, learning to cut, join and strengthen wood for the first time. In the summer term, children begin to develop their understanding of textiles in Cut, Stitch and Join. They learn to sew a simple running stitch, use pattern pieces and add simple embellishments. They also continue to learn about mechanisms in the project Push and Pull by using sliders, levers and linkages in products.


Year 3

In the autumn term of Year 3, children continue to learn about food, understanding the concept of a balanced diet and making healthy meals in the project Cook Well, Eatwell. In the spring term project Making it Move, children extend their understanding of mechanisms by exploring cams and using joining and finishing techniques to make automaton toys. In the summer term project Greenhouse, they continue to develop their knowledge of structures, using triangles and braces for strength. They design and build a greenhouse, using their understanding of opacity and transparency and the needs of plants from science learning to inform their design.

Year 4

In the autumn term of Year 4, children continue to develop their understanding of food in the project Fresh Food, Good Food. They learn about food safety and preservation technologies before designing and making packaging for a healthy snack. During the spring term project Functional and Fancy Fabrics, children continue to explore textiles, learning about the work of William Morris before designing, embellishing and finishing a fabric sample. In the summer term project Tomb Builders, they build on their knowledge of mechanisms, learning about six simple machines and using their knowledge to create a lifting or moving device prototype. They also explore and use electrical systems and IT monitoring and control in the science project Electrical Circuits and Conductors for the first time.


Year 5

In the autumn term of Year 5, children deepen their understanding of mechanisms by studying pneumatic systems in the project Moving Mechanisms. They learn about the forces at play and create a prototype for a functional, pneumatic machine. In the spring term project Eat the Seasons, children continue to explore food and nutrition, learning about seasonal foods and the benefits of eating seasonally. In the summer term, they learn more about structures in the project Architecture, studying the history of architecture and developing new ways to create structural strength and stability. They use computer-aided design and consolidate their making skills to produce scale models. They also explore the electrical conductivity of materials before making products incorporating circuits in the science project Properties and Changes of Materials.


Year 6

In the autumn term of Year 6, children learn about processed and whole foods in the project Food for Life, creating healthy menus from unprocessed foods. In the spring term project Engineer, children consolidate their knowledge of structures, joining and strengthening techniques and electrical systems by completing a bridge-building challenge. In the summer term project Make Do and Mend, they extend their knowledge of textiles by learning new stitches to join fabrics and using pattern pieces to create a range of products.


Units of Work


Year 1 Autumn

Shade and Shelter

This project teaches children about the purpose of shelters and their materials. They name and describe shelters and design and make shelter prototypes. Children then design and build a play den as a group and evaluate their completed product.


Year 1 Spring


This project teaches children about wheels, axles and chassis and how they work together to make a vehicle move.


Year 1 Summer

Chop, Slice and Mash

This project teaches children about sources of food and the preparatory skills of peeling, tearing, slicing, chopping, mashing and grating. They use this knowledge and techniques to design and make a supermarket sandwich according to specific design criteria.


Year 2 Autumn

Remarkable Recipes

This project teaches children about sources of food and tools used for food preparation. They also discover why some foods are cooked and learn to read a simple recipe. The children choose and make a new school meal that fulfils specific design criteria.


Year 2 Spring

Beach Hut

This project teaches children about making and strengthening structures, including different ways of joining materials.


Year 2 Summer

Cut, Stitch and Join

This project teaches children about fabric home products and the significant British brand Cath Kidston. They learn about sewing patterns and using a running stitch and embellishments before making a sewn bag tag.


Year 3 Autumn

Cook Well, Eatwell

This project teaches children about food groups and the Eatwell guide. They learn about methods of cooking and explore these by cooking potatoes and ratatouille. The children choose and make a taco filling according to specific design criteria.


Year 3 Spring

Making It Move

This project teaches children about cam mechanisms. They experiment with different shaped cams before designing, making and evaluating a child's automaton toy.


Year 3 Summer


This project teaches children about the purpose, structure and design features of greenhouses, and compares the work of two significant greenhouse designers. They learn techniques to strengthen structures and use tools safely. They use their learning to design and construct a mini greenhouse.


Year 4 Autumn

Fresh Food, Good Food

This project teaches children about food decay and preservation. They discover key inventions in food preservation and packaging, then make examples. The children prepare, package and evaluate a healthy snack.


Year 4 Spring

Functional and Fancy Fabrics

This project teaches children about home furnishings and the significant designer William Morris. They learn techniques for decorating fabric, including block printing, hemming and embroidery and use them to design and make a fabric sample.


Year 4 Summer

Tomb Builders

This project teaches children about simple machines, including wheels, axles, inclined planes, pulleys and levers, exploring how they helped ancient builders to lift and move heavy loads.


Year 5 Autumn

Moving Mechanisms

This project teaches children about pneumatic systems. They experiment with pneumatics before designing, making and evaluating a pneumatic machine that performs a useful function.


Year 5 Spring

Eat the Seasons

This project teaches children about the meaning and benefits of seasonal eating, including food preparation and cooking techniques.


Year 5 Summer


This project teaches children about how architectural style and technology has developed over time and then use this knowledge to design a building with specific features.


Year 6 Autumn

Food for Life

This project teaches children about processed food and healthy food choices. They make bread and pasta sauces and learn about the benefits of whole foods. They plan and make meals as part of a healthy daily menu, and evaluate their completed products.


Year 6 Spring


This project teaches children about remarkable engineers and significant bridges, learning to identify features, such as beams, arches and trusses. They complete a bridge-building engineering challenge to create a bridge prototype.


Year 6 Summer

Make Do and Mend

This project teaches children a range of simple sewing stitches, including ways of recycling and repurposing old clothes and materials.