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Buxton Community School

Buxton Community School

Design Technology

Head of Department: Mrs Judith Birtles  (

Key Stage 3

All students in Year 7, 8 and 9 experience the full breadth of the curriculum in Design and Technology. The Technology department deliver a range of projects that engages students in the design and making process. The lessons develop their research analysis, concept generation, manufacturing planning and practical skills through a range of learning activities that provide support and challenge to all levels of ability and aim to prepare them for the challenges of GCSE Design Technology. Students’ progress is tracked through a combination of design portfolio and practical skills based projects, homework tasks and end of module tests.

Year 7 Projects

Ball Bearing Game - A wood and Graphics based design and make project where students design and make a maze. The main focus is to allow students to develop their problem solving skills and basic workshop skills and knowledge.

Creative Creature – A wood based project where students research, generate ideas and learn how to use a range of hand tools and machinery. There is a research task based on the arts and crafts movement focusing on William Morris.

Mood Light – An electronics based project where student make a light variable colour changing circuit which is housed in a CAD/CAM unit. In this project they study the work of Alberto Alessi.

Year 8 Projects

Amplifier Project- Students build upon previous soldiering skills and component knowledge enabling them to produce a marketable end product. They study the work of James Dyson.

Pewter Pendant Project – A pewter casting project students experience casting metal for a specific target market. Students research the life and works of Charles Rennie Macintosh.

Year 9 Projects

Clock Project- Combining a range of materials and processes student design and make their own unique prototype. This unit encourages students to develop independent workshop skills.

Game On- Expanding on previous skills and knowledge students design and make a table top style game combining timbers and graphic design. Student have a choice to make a range of games from air hockey to pinball based on individuals research.


Key Stage 4

At KS4, we offer AQA GCSE Design and Technology.  This is a two year course focusing on the design and manufacturing process.

In year 10 students undertake a range of project focused briefs building upon their skills and knowledge from kS3.  They experience both hand and CAD/CAM designing and making in timbers, metals and polymers.  Students are encouraged to test, analyse and evaluate their projects as part of the interactive design process.

On the 1st of June in year 10 the exam board release a range design contexts which the student select and develop into a design and make project of their choice. This Non Examined Assessment (NEA) is worth 50% of the final GCSE grade. This project is completed and submitted in March of year 11.

Students complete an end of course examination which is centred around design and manufacture which covers; materials, processes, sustainability, ethical design, and manufacture in industry.  15% of the paper covers applied maths.

The curriculum encourages problem solving, risk taking and independent creativity.  It is an exciting and rewarding course that our students gain many skills they can transfer beyond the classroom.


construction and the built environment wjec

This course prepares students for a career in the construction industry.

Students undertake brick laying, painting and decorating and joinery. These units are practical based and assessed throughout the 2 year course. The other units focus on health and safety and practical maths, and are exam based.

The curriculum gives students the skills and knowledge to enable them to move on to employment in a broad range of construction-based apprenticeships and further education. It is a hands-on, enjoyable and rigorous course.