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Gladesmore Community School

Gladesmore Community School

Design and Technology

“Design runs through the fabric of our society, therefore, we are driven to inspire and create future problem solvers, critical thinkers and independent makers.”

KS4 Specification

Edexcel GCSE Design and Technology.

National Curriculum

Gladesmore Community School prides ourselves on delivering the breadth and ambition of the National Curriculum.

Curriculum Intent

The Design and Technology Faculty is driven to inspire and create future problem solvers for our society. Our aim is to stimulate all pupils to enjoy learning and to develop an enquiring mind so that they are able to grow into critical thinkers, independent designers and makers. Through our school’s nurturing environment, students are made to feel safe to explore and express their creativity and ideas. By working through each design problem with which they are presented, students are able to develop resilience through the problem-solving process and to overcome challenges by testing and refining their ideas through to realisation, bringing their ideas into fruition.

We believe that Design and Technology provides opportunities for our students to develop a well-rounded education which allows them to delve into their experiences of living in the cosmopolitan city that is London. To enrich our students’ learning at KS3, we offer the opportunity to gain a CREST Discovery Award in partnership with TFL, to take part in STEM challenges, to meet engineers so as to gain an understanding of careers beyond KS5 and to expose students to pathways including civil engineering, project management and 3D graphics/visualisation. At KS4, we organise visits to the New Designers Show each year which allow students to see and draw inspiration from the work of exciting young designers and to envision the possibilities of their future in design beyond the classroom. Students are also taught how the skills they develop within Design and Technology can be applied through further study including apprenticeships, college and university pathways. 

Design runs through the fabric of our society and here we learn by doing. We share our passion and love for Design and Technology, helping students to recognise its prevalence in our day-to-day living. We ensure that students learn to develop traditional skills alongside the development of technical skills using modern CNC technology and building skills for the unknown future. We strive to create an engaging, fun and accessible environment in Design and Technology — one which encourages students to challenge themselves and which, in turn, fosters their independence, confidence and creativity.

Our curriculum sets out a mastery approach to secure a foundation of practical skills and knowledge, taking into account students’ different experiences at KS2 and recognising that prior knowledge may be limited. The Design and Technology journey of each student allows them to strengthen their repertoire of skills and knowledge by working with a range of materials, including timbers, polymers, paper and boards. We enable students to develop research techniques so that they are able to understand that design and research, together, form an inherent part of the design process. In line with the school’s curriculum policy, our scaffolded curriculum, at both KS3 and KS4, is both academic and ambitious, promoting the application of knowledge and skills through a series of projects and enabling success at KS4 and beyond. 

Through our curriculum, we also emphasise the importance of our choices. Our delivery of both different topics at KS3 and of the Key stage 4 curriculum, allows us to teach students the moral, social and ethical implications of our everyday actions and to embed values which respect and appreciate our natural resources. This equips students with a deeper understanding of their responsibilities as designers and stewards of our planet. Likewise, to celebrate our multicultural society, our curriculum allows students to explore the work of designers from a range of disciplines and cultural backgrounds. This is showcased in our annual Gladesfest Christmas Enterprise Project which celebrates our local culture, students’ original work and gives them their first taste of commercial success through collaborative working. 

Overall, the Design and Technology curriculum at Gladesmore is shaped to support students through the iterative process, encouraging them to work both independently and collaboratively. Students are ultimately able to make informed design solutions that embrace inclusively and diversity, and result in the successful bringing of design ideas to life.

Curriculum Summary

Year 7 

Mobile Docking Station

We cover: 

  • Health and Safety
  • Learning how to collect primary research
  • The Work of Alessi
  • Design Specification
  • Using CAD/CAM
  • Measuring and Marking Tools
  • Working with Timbers and Polymers
  • Using a range of tools and equipment in the workshop independently. 
  • Learning to programme with Arduino 
  • Working Properties of Polymers
  • Environmental Impact of Polymers
  • Scales of Production and using jigs for batch production. 
  • Characteristics of Hardwoods, Softwoods and Manufactured Timbers

Door Hanger

We cover:

  • Typography 
  • Rendering
  • Design Specification
  • The Work of A Designer
  • Communicating Design Ideas
  • Developing Ideas using feedback
  • Testing Against Specification 
  • Applying knowledge of levers and linkages
  • Working Properties of Paper and Boards
  • Using a range of graphical tools safely 

Year 8 

Light It Up

We cover:

  • Exploring a Design Problem
  • Researching Users Needs and Wants 
  • Using modelling to communicate a range of ideas. 
  • Working collaboratively to present, test and refine ideas in a group. 
  • Using various hand tools and machinery  to construct joints. 
  • Using a router safely
  • Learning to assemble and apply finishes.
  • Learning to work with Pine and Hardwoods. 
  • Working Properties of Timbers
  • Selecting appropriate materials and processes for the final product

Pencil Topper and Blister Packaging 

We cover: 

  • Primary and Secondary Research 
  • The Work of Zaha Hadid
  • Writing a Design Brief and Specification
  • Initial Ideas with peer feedback. 
  • Developing Ideas using CAD
  • Using a range of CAM machines
  • Critical Evaluation
  • The role of packaging
  • Process of making paper and boards. 
  • Using a vacuum former and die cutter
  • Technical Drawing

Year 9 

  • Designing and making products for Gladesfest Xmas Enterprise. 
  • A range of short projects to build CAD skills
  • Develop creativity using CAD to make a casting mould for use on the Brazing Hearth
  • Build on practical skills and develop accuracy in the workshop. 
  • Developing 3D modelling skills to communicate ideas.
  • Prototyping ideas and refining ideas to meet the users needs. 
  • Learning how to use sublimation printing to make a wide range of products

Year 10 

  • Building core and specialist knowledge 
  • Extending knowledge of wide range of materials and their properties. 
  • Evaluating the impact of new technologies on society.
  • Analysing the life cycle of different products and evaluating their ecological and social footprint
  • Developing a broad range of practical skills.
  • Learning to work with a range of materials including plastics, timbers and paper and boards. 

Year 11 

  • Responding to the contextual challenge set by the exam board
  • Use a range of communication techniques to communicate ideas. 
  • Use 3D modelling to develop and refine ideas. 
  • Use the iterative process to design a successful product that meets users needs. 
  • Selecting a range of materials and process to make a high quality product. 



Gladesmore Community School
Crowland Road
N15 6EB


020 8800 0884