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Design & Technology

Design & Technology

To provide a technological education which will bring lasting motivation in the study of Technology, for enjoyment, interest, and understanding of the modern world today and tomorrow.

Mark Rothko

Design & Technology strives to develop student confidence to think, express and explore their world. To nurture curiosity to explore ideas and find solutions.​

Design & Technology at DACA allows students to apply the knowledge and skills learned in other subjects, particularly Maths and Science. The department plays an integral part in the promotion of STEM careers. Capturing student’s interests, through a curriculum which is embedded with external partnerships, including RAF, V&A and Tomorrows Engineers, giving students real life meaning and motivation for their learning. Whilst supporting the industrial history of Darwen by promoting and in encouraging, all sectors of design, manufacturing, engineering, and catering careers, which supports the national drive to reduce employment gaps in these industries.

Our curriculum is shaped by the Academy’s vision which aims to realise full academic potential and develop a lifelong passion for learning. The Design & Technology department have a primary principle of asking the question of ‘Why is That?’ and using problem solving to find a solution. Students are encouraged and supported to engage in their learning, to improve teamwork and collaboration skills, embrace mistakes to learn and progress academically and personally.

What we teach and when we teach it - KS3 Design & Technology

What we teach and when we teach it - KS4 Design & Technology

What we teach and when we teach it - KS4 Food Preparation and Nutrition


Design & Technology Team

  • Miss Lisa Morris - Head of Design & Technology
  • Miss Laura Hyde - Teacher of Design & Technology and Art
  • Ms Kayleigh Greenwood - Teacher of D&T and Computer Science
  • Mr Mark Turnbull - Design & Technology Technician
  • Mr Dave Pearson - Teacher of Food, Nutrition, Hospitality and Catering
  • Mr David Storrie - Food Technician 

Teaching staff within the Department offer a wide range of specialist areas. These include resistant materials, CAD/CAM, design skills, visual communication, textiles and food and Nutrient Technology is taught within an environment which encourages pupils to become resourceful in their approach to work, and to build on basic skills as they progress through the various courses and projects offered.


We aim to engender a love of learning, self-belief and aspiration through several intentions that are unpacked further. Those intentions are removing barriers to learning; developing knowledge and skills for learning in a range of subjects; developing personal attributes and to enrich students’ experiences and broaden their horizons.

Through our curriculum provision we intend to develop:

  • To provide an environment where all students are challenged and supported to achieve their very best.
  • To develop a love of learning, which will exist beyond school.
  • To support the development of literacy skills by providing opportunities for developing reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills.
  • To develop the skills to research topics and choose the best sources of information to develop their understanding
  • To ensure tolerance of others and respect for ideas and opinions. This will allow students to engage in debate with others, while valuing different views.
  • To develop thinking skills and approaches to problem solving.
  • To promote, and encourage the development of skills in, independent learning.
  • To provide support, advice, and guidance to support students in further study or employment

Aims for Food Preparation and Nutrition

  • Understand and apply the principles of nutrition and health, how nutritional needs vary with age and health conditions. Build knowledge of the source, seasonality, and characteristics of a broad range of ingredients.
  • Demonstrate a repertoire of a healthy and varied affordable diet recipes and instil a love of cooking that leads self-sufficiency and independence.
  • Understand the economic, environmental, ethical, religious, and socio-cultural influences on food availability, production processes, ingredients, diet, and health choices.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of functional chemical and nutritional properties, the sensory qualities and the microbiological considerations leading to food preparation.
  • To critique, evaluate and test food and the food of others.
  • Ensure that students achieve their expectations in a creative and innovative way.


The Design & Technology curriculum at DACA exposes our young people to the creative industries to nurture a culturally enriched life. We aim to support students to develop their confidence and resilience to think, express and explore their creative curiosity; through the design and making process. Students are taught to combine their knowledge and understanding of process with their design and making skills, to produce quality outcomes. Skills are taught progressively through the key stages, to ensure that all students can learn, practice, and develop their skills and knowledge. Generating quality items using ingredients, components, fabrics, raw materials such as wood, metal, plastic, new and smart materials. Testing and evaluation are an integral part of the process and allows students to adapt and improve their outcomes and supports their development of key life skills.

In teaching our KS3 curriculum, we expose and inspire pupils to have a love and enjoyment for cooking for pleasure.

Our Year 9 curriculum allows us to give pupils a broad experience of Food Preparation and Nutrition and the part it plays in our lives as a pleasure and not just a necessity. We can enrich pupils’ experiences of ingredients through tasting sessions and making a wider variety of recipes from many different cultures. Time allows us to experiment with ingredients and investigate their properties. It also allows us to develop the pupils’ knowledge of a wide range of our subject’s technical language. Pupils also gain an insight into food within the Catering and Hospitality industries.

The skills we teach contribute to the school’s mission statement to enable students to play a full part in society.


We will assess if we are having the positive impact we aim for through regular monitoring (for example book scrutinies and learning walks) to ensure we are leading to positive progress for all. The curriculum will be evident across all lessons and students will be able articulate their learning.

Design & Technology make frequent use of data collection that allows for immediate feedback; be that sample tasting in cooking or design adjustments in D&T. Students make use of design journals to track their skills and knowledge development and they will receive live, verbal feedback to address any gaps in learning that may be present. A range of strategies are used in all lessons to aid in knowledge recall, such as do now activities, recall questions and exit tickets to establish learnt knowledge. Teachers will also provide students with strength and target comments on larger pieces of work.