design tech


Design & Technology

Product Design

Students love nothing more than to create. Here in Product design all students are given the opportunity to exercise their creative flair in a whole host of different ways. We truly believe that by giving students access to a wide variety of materials, techniques and processes they can experiment and build imaginative and inspiring products. When we combine this with a good working knowledge of twenty first century industrial processes we have classes of students who are happy, driven, inquisitive and motivated. Students are led by highly effective teachers who are passionate about teaching all aspects of Design and technology.

At key stage 3 students work through the design processes, varying the tasks between the 3 years. All projects have an outcome that can be taken home and used. These include a “Phone Flasher” using bent plywood, acrylic and CAD/CAM methods, a series of hanging panels incorporating a clock mechanism and finally an “MP3 Speaker” using a PCB, Acrylic and the process of sublimation. Within these projects students are actively encouraged to experiment and change aspects of the final outcome; a secondary function for example or a change to the dominant material. It is very important to us that the students are not always led but rather that they have a say in deciding where they want the project to lead them. We like to give the children autonomy in the classroom and where we, as teachers, become the facilitators. These projects run on a 12 week rotation with textiles/Systems and Control and Food technology.

Product design is a very popular choice at GCSE and the department prides itself on excellent A* - C grades year on year. All classes are mixed ability and we use all the latest new technologies to inspire and motivate our students to learn and expand their knowledge and understanding of their environment and to understand exactly “what does makes a product successful”?

Food Technology

All students in KS3 study food technology in yrs 7,8 and  9. They study food hygiene, safety in the kitchen, nutrition and healthy eating. The course closely follows the government recommendations set down in licence to cook.  Practical work is linked to the theory and students usually cook once a week during each module.

In Ks4 food technology is an option. We study the OCR food and nutrition course.

Textiles Technology

The textiles technology department within the Soar Valley College Design & Technology Faculty is an enthusiastic, prolific team of two full time members of specialist staff. 

Textiles is offered as part of the Design & Technology rotation process at Years 7, 8 and 9 and students will spend twenty weeks in each of the design areas. Students are allocated four periods of design per fortnight in groups of no more than twenty four at KS3. KS4 group numbers may vary due to the number of students opting for the subject but are usually between sixteen and twenty four.

Both members of staff have their own teaching room equipped with multi media projectors and make use of the college’s lap safes. There are enough sewing machines in each room to accommodate full class sets and there are also two computer aided embroidery machines and two over locking machines.

The department is committed to encouraging students design sense and flair to flourish and mature through a wide variety of focussed practical tasks and development of skills. Students will experiment and gain experience of both traditional and up to the minute techniques and applications which include use of the latest CAD/CAM equipment.

Practical skills taught through varied and challenging schemes of work include pattern cutting, appliqué, embroidery, fabric painting and dying and embellishment (applying sequins and beads). Students gain an understanding and relevance of textiles within cultural and historical contexts as well as looking at manufacturing processes and emerging textiles technology such as smart materials, nanotechnology and geosynthetics. Textiles is promoted as a life skill and students are encouraged to adopt a ‘Mend, not spend’ ethos by recycling and customising their own pieces.

we offer AQA GCSE Textiles  in which students develop more sophisticated design and practical skills and will design and make a high end fashion product as well as producing a highly involved portfolio.


Key Stage three assessment descriptors are attached below.  The “learning pathway” (e.g.  8-9) indicates the likely GCSE grade that a student may expect at the end of year 11, based upon both their current attainment and year of study.