Design and Technology
The Craft, Design and Technology department consists of three workshops and three classrooms with twenty computers in each of the classrooms. We try to make best use of these facilities by delivering a wide variety of courses that, where appropriate, are heavily supported by ICT. Our design and make courses allow pupils to express their creativity and take home artefacts that they have made in school. Computer based simulators are used to support our technology courses where pupils can quickly generate and refine electrical, mechanical, structural and pneumatic ideas.
We have kept on top of advances in technology via the acquisition of computer controlled machinery and now have access to two pieces of equipment that allow pupils to design on a computer screen and have their ideas manufactured automatically i.e. CADCAM (Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Manufacture).
All of our coursework in CDT is hosted on our department website which allows both teachers and pupils to access tasks, support notes, PowerPoint shows and videos very quickly. This has helped us to put the pupil at the centre of the learning process encouraging them to take more responsibility for the pace and standard of their work. Tasks are often presented in the form of a brief introduction followed by a quality exemplar and a supporting target sheet.
S1 and S2
Currently pupils are allocated one period of CDT in S1 and two periods in S2. Practical projects in S1 include a key rack produced via CADCAM, jewellery, a racing car which is tested in a class competition, and a steady hand game that integrates craft work, graphic design, and an electronic circuit. We also have a computer control unit of work where pupils are given the hands-on task of controlling a programmable vehicle. In S2 our courses follow a similar approach although the extra period allows us the time to build skills in 3D modelling software which is a major feature of our graphic and design courses in later years.
The development of a new course in S3 has given us the opportunity to give pupils a choice of two out of the three main areas within CDT.
Design and Manufacture challenges the pupil to both design and make a functional and attractive product. Design work is computer based and used to generate ideas for projects including a photo frame, butterfly / aeroplane, and a storage unit.
Engineering Science builds on pupils’ previous experiences in electronics and computer programming. New concepts are introduced via the design and testing of a rocket which is propelled via compressed air. Pupils will also make a model of a wind turbine and investigate the effects of blade design, wind direction, and wind speed.
Graphic Communication focusses on developing skills using both 2D and 3D design software. It is heavily computer based and involves pupils creating drawings of common artefacts and presenting them in an appropriate manner. This could be in the form of detailed drawings with sizes for a builder or tradesman, or in the form of coloured 3D images to advertise and promote a product.
Int1, Int2, Higher
In CDT we have the opportunity of offering a wide range of courses at various levels depending on the uptake and demand from pupils. These courses are listed below:
Design and Manufacture Engineering Science Graphic Communication
Practical Electronics Practical Metalworking Practical Woodworking
Design and Manufacture has two key areas in the form of design and the understanding of materials and manufacturing methods. Pupils will be asked to design within certain contexts e.g. furniture for a sports complex, and will use both manual and computer based methods to generate design ideas before developing and refining them into a final solution. This process is supported by learning about traditional and modern materials with reference to manufacturing process that are suited to them. The course is assessed in the form of a design assignment and written exam.
Engineering Science is heavily maths based with topics covering the design, simulation and construction of electronic circuits, computer control and programming, the design and mathematical testing of structural and mechanical systems, as well as the analysis and evaluation of existing and new engineering systems. The course is assessed in the form of a written exam.
Graphic Communication is split into two main sections in the form of 2D and 3D graphics. In both areas pupils will develop their skills in sketching and in the use of computer software using AutoCAD and Autodesk Inventor. The use of layout, colour and other presentation techniques is covered via desk top publishing software. The course is then assessed via a folio of work and final examination.
The practical courses listed are almost entirely workshop based and entail very little in the way of written work. They are assessed via the construction of artefacts or circuits and do not include a final written exam. Projects in Practical Metalworking are likely to include the manufacture of a vice, candle holder, tool box, and barbecue. Within Practical Woodwork projects are likely to be a mirror, wall cabinet, wine table, and pendulum clock. Practical Electronics focuses on the construction of circuits on breadboard containing resistors, capacitors, LEDs, transistors etc.