The Knights Templar School

The Knights Templar School

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Technology Subject Courses

Key Stages 3 and 4

Our new courses at KS4 and KS5 are now well established and details of each are included below.

Cooking and Nutrition

The Key Stage 3 curriculum develops basic practical skills during Year 7, we introduce healthy eating using recipes in Year 8 and in Year 9 students build on skills previously learnt while embedding evaluative skills. Also during KS3 Food Science is introduced to the students which aims to prepare students for GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition.

AQA Food Preparation and Nutrition GCSE
This new AQA course will allow students to learn about the science and health of food as well as extending their practical knowledge of skills and equipment to make high quality products. Students will use knowledge of nutrition, food science, food safety and look at where our food ingredients come from to combine a wide range of 12 practical skills in food preparation.  All assessment of practical work and the written exam happen in Year 11 with Year 10 used to practise and consolidate knowledge, knife skills, recipe modifications and organisation.

Main book(s) used at GCSE:

AQA GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition (Hodder Education)


The component parts of Design Technology at KTS

The GCSE course starts with students learning a range of textiles techniques, and creating samples of these to build a portfolio of knowledge they can refer to. They then go on to design and create a baby dress or dungarees, which often spark the interest of students. They then are given a bit more freedom in designing and making a bag of their choice, which encourages a lot of individuality. Year 10 ends with students starting to research and form ideas for their final year 11 Controlled Assessment.

technology - Y7 cushionYear 7 cushion


AQA for GCSE Design and Technology

GCSE Design and Technology will prepare students to participate confidently and successfully in an increasingly technological world. Students will gain awareness and learn from wider influences on Design and Technology including historical, social, cultural, environmental and economic factors.

The new GCSE places greater emphasis on understanding and applying iterative design processes. Students will use their creativity and imagination to design and make prototypes that solve real and relevant problems, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values.  This iterative design challenge is undertaken in year 11 and makes up 50% of the qualification.

Our GCSE allows students to study core technical and designing and making principles, including a broad range of design processes, materials techniques and equipment. They will also have the opportunity to study specialist technical principles in greater depth and these will depend upon the learner’s preferred material choice, broadly grouped as resistant materials or textiles.

Students must also demonstrate mathematical and scientific knowledge and understanding, in relation to design and technology. At least 15% of the exam will assess maths and at least 10% will assess science.  This GCSE leads nicely into A level Product Design at KTS.

OCR Level 1/Level 2 Cambridge National Certificate in Engineering Design

This qualification is aimed at learners who wish to study the processes involved in designing new engineered products and the requirements of a design specification. Through research and practical activities, learners will understand how markets and opportunities inform client briefs and will use practical skills such as drawing, computer modelling and model making to communicate design ideas.

Learners will apply practical skills to produce a prototype in the form of a model and test design ideas to inform further product development. Through reflection, learners evaluate the prototype, making a comparable outcome against specification points, and assess possible, practical solutions and improvements to their prototype design. A practical approach to teaching and learning will provide learners with knowledge in engineering technology and develop their critical thinking, creativity and dextrous skills through engaging practical experiences.

Only 25% of this qualification is gained from a formal exam. The other 75% is gained by completing coursework in each of the following areas: product analysis and research, developing and presenting engineering designs and 3D design realisation. Although not a GCSE it carries the same weight and as such can take learners on to study A level Product Design.

Technology Useful Websites:

You can find out more about GCSE Design and Technology qualifications at Design and Technology (8552)


Systems and Control
In year 7 students learn how to make and solder their own PCBs (Printed Circuit Boards).  During KS3 they will design and make several products including a random number generator, a lamp and an MP3 amplifier/speaker.  They will learn about different ways to house their circuits and be involved in increasing complex circuits, one of which features a PIC microcontroller, which they programme themselves.

In year 10 students build upon skills learnt in KS3.  Theory covers important electronics knowledge as well as mechanisms and industrial practices.  We introduce greater use of CAD/CAM and the designing and making of their own PCBs.  Short projects throughout year 10 give students the knowledge and confidence to design products in year 11 which can be interactive.  The end products often incorporate mechanical systems as well as electronics.


Graphic Products
Graphics skills are taught through the various Design Technology projects throughout KS3.  Students learn basic drawing techniques: how to present ideas in three dimensional views and also in orthographic projection.  Computer Aided Design is covered in several projects and usually leads to a product which is manufactured using the 3D printer, vinyl cutter, or one of our laser cutters.  We also encourage neatness in all project work, acknowledging that attractive presentation is important for effective communication of ideas.  Graphic Products in KS3 include packaging for a cable tidy in year 7, the lamp shades in year 8, film posters, badges and other advertising merchandise.

Through realistic design & make projects at KS4 we learn about materials used for modelling and packaging and printing techniques.  The GCSE projects involve making 2D & 3D products using a range of materials and techniques.  Areas of study include the design of packaging for a chocolate bar & the related point of sale display and the design of theatrical scenery or film sets which are then made in model form.  Students choose from a range of design briefs for their final year 11 project.

Main books used in GCSE AQA Graphic Products

AQA Design and Technology Graphic Products (Nelson Thomas)

GSCE Design & Technology Graphic Products Revision Essentials (Collins)


Resistant Materials
During Key Stage 3 students will experience designing and making in a range of resistant materials: wood, metal and plastic.  Sometimes they will work on a design and make project using a single material, like the wooden vehicle in year 7, or the metal animals in year 8.  At other times they will choose and use from a selection of materials, as in the amplifier project in year 9.

During year ten we focus on two main projects, one developing skills in constructing using wood and the other using metal.  Both projects are designed by the students on a theme of storage.  For the Controlled Assessment Students spend almost all of year 11 designing and making one project. 

Main books used in GCSE AQA Resistant Materials Graphic Products

AQA Design and Technology Resistant Materials Technology (Nelson Thomas)

GCSE Design & Technology for AQA Resistant Materials (Heinemann)

GSCE Design & Technology Resistant Materials Revision Essentials (Collins)


Children’s Play, Learning and Development

The Btec Children’s Play, Learning and Development is a Level 1& 2 qualification (GCSE equivalent), this course is available for Year 10 and 11 students only. The course focuses on children from birth to 8 years old and is split into three units. Unit 1 is a written exam and units 2 and 3 are folder based. Students will learn about the development of children, how children learn through play and the principles of early years practice.

We have built links with a local nursery so that our students can have a practical and first-hand experience in an early years setting!

Main book used in Btec CPLD : Btec First CPLD Pearson


Key Stage 5

At KS5 students have the opportunity to study the AQA A level Product Design course either to AS or to A2 level. AS involves further development of designing and making skills through the production of a portfolio and an end of course examination and A2 involves a major project submission and a synoptic examination paper.  Over the years our students have designed and made some truly fantastic products including furniture, jewellery, lighting solutions and fully functioning musical instruments.

We are also able to offer AQA A level Textiles.