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Design Technology


At Palfrey infant School we believe that all children are designers and encourage our children to discover and create their own ambitious design ideas. We provide exciting and stimulating lessons that are inclusive and actively teach knowledge, skills and discovery.

Our design technology scheme of work enables pupils to meet the end of key stage attainment targets in the National Curriculum and the aim align with those in the in the National Curriculum. EYFS provide opportunities for pupils to work towards the Early Learning Goals. We provide a spiral curriculum for our children. We use a range of resources to develop resilient learners that reflect on their work to enable progression. This expands the children’s understanding of the world that they live in and gives them the tools to be able to think as designers, developing their Design Technology and understanding of how Design Technology is used and can influence us in everyday life; developing transferable life skills. Children are inspired to ask questions which promote independent learning. They are encouraged to question the world around them and to use prior learning to explain what they discover. At Palfrey Infant School children make purpose and relevant choices through the designing and making process, work independently and co-operatively in addition to applying problem solving skills. They are exposed to specific Design Technology vocabulary in a progressive and ambitious manner: lessons involve clear and concise modelling of this vocabulary giving children the confidence to use the correct terminology in their work. We use a scheme called Kapow developing it and tailoring it specifically to Palfrey Infant School. Children are constantly showing that they are ‘knowing more and remembering more’ through regular retrieval practise and building on prior knowledge.



Design Technology in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is part of Expressive Arts and Design (EAD) section of the curriculum. Children are naturally inquisitive and love to ask questions, explore new media and investigate their own creativity. It is vital, therefore, that we develop their passion for Design Technology discovery from a young age.

At New Palfrey Infant School, we aim to deliver a well-balanced EYFS curriculum, where children can explore, investigate and ask questions about objects, people and resources within their child-initiated play and also during adult led and taught sessions. A fundamental part of the EYFS curriculum is enabling the environment so that children can fully access aspects of EAD within all areas of the classroom, both inside and out. Evidence for EAD is collected as a whole class within a Floor Book, which shows the learning process that the children have taken during adult led and child-initiated sessions. WOW moments and child-initiated learning is evidenced in individual Learning Journeys. At least one adult led session per week has an EAD focus and lessons are introduced using “Previously…” to ensure children are remembering what they have previously learnt. Verbal feedback is given throughout activities and misconceptions addressed and learning moved forward during adult and child interactions


In KS1, Design Technology, focused learning and work is recorded in Art and Design Technology books. Knowledge maps have been created which shows the skills and knowledge that are taught within each year group and how these skills develop to ensure that attainment targets are securely met by the end of  KS1. At the start of each new topic, knowledge organisers are shared with the class and are available each lesson so that they can be referenced by the children throughout their learning. Knowledge organisers have the specific key vocabulary for Design Technology and show what prior learning the children will have done that links directly to their learning. Recording can come in a variety of different forms depending on the unit of work and the resources that children are using, however recording can include observations and critical analysis of existing products, testing and choosing of design materials, design ideas and development, practice of skills, annotations, photographic evidence and explanations and reflective evaluations.

Design Technology lessons are sequential, building upon prior learning and giving the children the knowledge and skills to be able to produce their own creative and ambitious design ideas and engage the children’s interest and allow them to put theories and observations into a real-life context.

Each lesson has a clear learning intent which is shared using an ‘I can…’ statement as a learning objective which is shared at the beginning and throughout the lesson with the children. These are taken directly from the National Curriculum. Within each lesson, children are referred to as ‘Designers’ to inspire their creativity and understanding of each of our unique skills as Designers. Verbal feedback is constantly given throughout each lesson and misconceptions addressed quickly as they arise. Written feedback is given at the end of each lesson following the school’s marking policy. Children may be given a ‘Next Step’ to practise or consolidate a new skill or demonstrate the learnt skill in a different application.

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


Short term assessment is a feature of each lesson. Observations and careful questioning enable teachers to adjust lessons, address misconceptions and brief other adults in the class if necessary. On-going assessment must be used to inform planning, particularly to identify children who have already achieved or mastered the objectives that are being taught or consolidated. Children who have already achieved a focus objective are given opportunities to combine and apply their skills in a variety of contexts in order to demonstrate evidence of working at greater depth in that objective. Children who achieve ELG for Expressive Arts and Design at the end of Reception and have achieved ARE at the end of other year groups are judged to be working at an agerelated standard. All teachers use our school tracking system (Insight) to track pupil’s on-going progress towards Early Years outcomes and National Curriculum objectives. Teachers assess the children in their class for Design Technology in February (Mid-point) and July (End-point) each year. Teacher judgements are made using the National Curriculum standards, and the ‘I can….’ Statements used to teach the skills and objectives in the classroom. Teachers ensure that judgements are made on the children’s ability to achieve the skill(s) being taught and their creativity in their application.


By the time children leave Palfrey Infant Primary school they are:

  • Designers who are able to discover and create ambitious design ideas.
  • Make purposeful and relevant choices during their designing and making process.
  • Passionate Designers with a thirst for knowledge.
  • Able to apply problem solving skills to overcome challenges.
  • Developing transferable life skills. Understand and apply the principles of healthy eating, diets, and recipes, food groups and cooking equipment.
  • Able to use their Design Technology knowledge effectively to make links to all areas of the curriculum and enhance their knowledge and understanding.
  • Have an appreciation for key individuals, inventions, and events in history and of today that impact our world.
  • Self-evaluate and reflect on learning at different stages and identify areas to improve.
  • Able to use and understand a wider range of Design Technology vocabulary.
  • Able to make at least good progress from their starting points.
  • This will help prepare children for key stage 2 and set the early foundations for life after school.