Technology involves the use of a wide range of materials, craft skills, computer skills and equipment in the designing and making of project work. The department is large and prides itself on providing skills that will enable students to become more independent. Innovation is an important part of what we encourage. Lessons are created to challenge and interest students in order to help them make decisions when designing and making their projects, this often helps students when they leave school in work. Homework is set regularly to enable rapid progress and to support examinations, project work and revision. Students’ progress is tracked by teachers to help focus students on individual targets; this is often linked to homework tasks. Students often gain grades that are higher than the national averages for similar schools in design and technology.
In all year groups, practical tasks are encouraged which support independent learning and help to teach the life skills needed in the world of work. Opportunities for academic and vocational qualifications are offered, which lead students directly into work or further, or higher Education.
The Technology rooms in Product Design, Construction, Hospitality and Food are well resourced, up to date and include laser and vacuum forming technology. There are nine technology rooms. These areas are supported by visits to exhibitions and entry into local and national competitions.
The option to choose a design and technology examination course at Key Stage 4 and the Sixth Form is open to all students who show enthusiasm and an ability to learn quickly. A GCSE minimum of a grade 5 is expected.
Gifted and Talented Students
Projects and opportunities on offer:
- There are opportunities in lessons for gifted and talented students to take projects in different directions with innumerable outcomes.
- Extra-curricular activities are available on a formal or on-demand basis to reflect student needs, Tuesdays and Thursdays are available most weeks.
- Students can be entered into the Chelmsford Science and Engineering Society (STEM- Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) competition with their designs.
STEM Club and STEM activities
Each July the Chelmsford Science and Engineering Society run a series of Technology competitions for schools in Essex. This is aimed at students in years 7 to 13. This prestigious event takes place in Chelmsford at the ARU, where the students individually showcase their work to a team of judges from well know businesses such as E2V and Ford UK.
One of the categories open to our students is the Science, Technology and Maths Club, (STEM award). As part of the design and technology club we have in previous years entered KS5 students, however in the last year we saw the first entry of some KS4 and KS3 students, winning several top awards for innovation and design execution. Entries included examination coursework and personal projects from technology based subjects and club interests.
Mr Barnes co-ordinates all entries depending on student’s interest and ability, club nights run in term 2 each Tuesday.
The Design and Technology department enters the regional finals of the Young Engineers’ Competition most years. This is held at Anglia Ruskin University in Chelmsford each July. This competition usually brings great success thanks to the hard work of our students and staff.