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Design technology progression of skills, knowledge and vocabulary document

We held a whole school STEM event to raise aspirations for children. Children were able to meet a variety of engineers and ask questions about their career.


In EYFS we have opportunities to develop our design, make and evaluate skills in our classroom areas. The children have free access to various craft and modelling materials and they are questioned on how they could evaluate and improve on what they have made. Children also regularly take part in cooking and baking activities to develop their skills in cooking and nutrition. 


We took part in a whole school STEM Mission to Mars and designed and built rockets.

In Nursery we enjoy baking each week. We make a variety of different recipes and enjoy helping out with each step. We have to make sure we wash our hands first.


As part of our whole school STEM Mission to Mars, reception classes designed rockets. They used air pressure as a force to get their rockets 'into orbit'.

In reception we designed and built houses as part of our topic A Place Called Home. We chose what materials we would like to build our houses with.

DT in our Key Stage 1 Base


As part of our whole school STEM Mission to Mars, we designed and made a Mars buggy for travelling on Mars.

DT in our Key Stage 2 base

As part of our whole school STEM Mission to Mars, we designed and made a Mars Rover.

Cooking and Nutrition


The cooking and nutrition strand of design technology is covered by all year groups.

Year 1


In year 1 we have been learning about cooking and nutrition by making a smoothie for our friends. We sampled a range of smoothies first to decide which ingredients to use. Then we planned which ingredients we would like to include in our own smoothies. We learnt about how to be safe and clean in the kitchen and made sure to wash our hands thoroughly, before carefully chopping the different fruits and vegetables. An adult helped us to blend them and we then tasted and evaluated our finished smoothies. Some of us liked them and some of us didn't! We thought about what we might change or keep the same if we could make them again.

Year 2

We practised our cutting skills and made our own fruit kebab. We followed a design brief and evaluated our kebabs after we ate them.

Year 3

We were given a design brief to create a soup for a vegetarian with some specific requirements. We taste tested some soups, looked at their ingredients and evaluated the existing products. We then designed a soup for our user, Lucy, and learned some new cutting techniques called the bridge and claw. 

Year 4

We designed and made healthy pizzas. We tasted and evaluated a range of existing products first. When designing our own pizzas, we thought about which ingredients to use based on their calorie content. 

Year 5 explored Thai food. They looked at the similarities and differences between recipe ingredients and tastes. They also explored similarities and differences between ingredients of Thai cuisine to their own diets. They taste tested existing products and began to plan their own Thai inspired dish. 



Vivienne made Pad Thai she said - “ I liked it because it was flavourful.”


Harry W made Pad Thai - “I didn’t like it. There was too much tomato. If I was going to make Thai food again I would still make pad Thai but I would put less tomato in.”



The children then evaluated their creations after a final taste test. Yum!

As part of our whole school STEM Mission to Mars, Year 6 designed and made nutritious, 'long life' snacks for space explorers to enjoy.



The textiles strand of design technology is covered in years 1,3 and 6.

Year 3

We had great fun making a bag to hold small presents in our Design and Technology lessons. We came up with a design criteria, made prototypes to test what material would be best to hold together our bag - we decided on sewing, then drew our design before finally making our own! We tried really hard with the needle and thread to make our bags look as neat as possible before finishing off with drawings and glitter. We also used old clothes and curtains to make our products sustainably.

Look how fab they are! 



The structures strand of design technology is covered in years 2,3 and 5.

Year 2


In DT, children were asked to design a temporary structure for an explorer. They were given a brief to design a structure that was lightweight and easy to assemble outdoors. 

Children went around the school and looked at existing structures and what they are made from.

Year 3

As part of our 'Mission to Mars' we were asked to create temporary structures for our astronauts to use upon landing. After research we discovered that it doesn't rain on mars so our product does not need to be waterproof, it needs to be lightweight for transport on the rocket and fast to put together. We have explored and evaluated existing products, looked at ways to strengthen and stiffen card (corrugation, ribbing and lamination) and put together different nets. We then designed our structures and looked at our weakened areas and strengthened them. We made fantastic prototype designs!

Year 5

We explored existing bridge structures and designs. We used current designs to gather ideas for our own structures. We explored strengthening and stiffening techniques. We were then able to use new knowledge and skills to create and test our prototype structures.

Mechanisms and mechanical systems


The mechanisms and mechanical systems strand if design technology is covered in years 1,2,4 and 5.

As part of our whole school STEM Mission to Mars, Year 1 designed and built vehicles for travelling on Mars. They explored wheels and and axels and which would be better for a variety of jobs.

As part of our whole school STEM Mission to Mars, Year 2 have been learning about mechanisms in DT.


We made sliders and levers.


It was a little tricky but very fun!

As part of our whole school STEM Mission to Mars, Year 4 explored pneumatics and made moving parts for their vehicles.



As part of our whole school STEM Mission to Mars, Year 5 designed and built vehicles with pulley and lever systems.