3 November 2023
Royal High School Bath welcomed a group of Year 4 students from Fitzmaurice Primary school in Bradford on Avon to enjoy a special day of Design Technology activities.
With limited Design Technology on the curriculum in most primary schools it was an exciting day for the students. The day was filled with fun practical activities including making shortbread stacks in Food Technology, where students learned about the function of the ingredients, followed a recipe to make the biscuits of even size and thickness while learning new knife skills to chop fruit evenly to create stable and delicious stacks. The students also enjoyed a Textiles lesson where they wove coats onto wooden llamas. They learned about where wool comes from and the environmental impact of acrylic wool. The activity allowed students to express their creativity emphasizing the importance of attention to detail, whilst reinforcing fine motor skills. The final activity took place in the workshop where students made a mini marble run game. The activity required accuracy and skill using traditional workshop tools and students had to measure, mark out, cut and sand their wooden components to make their game.
The experience showcased the students’ creativity but also demonstrated how applied practical learning can enhance understanding of numeracy and science as well as their critical thinking, problem solving and improving their hand eye co-ordination. Within the day, the students hadn’t realised they had spent the day working on their STEM skills and Royal High teachers talked about how using these skills together allows them to become Engineers, Architects and Designers of the future, and that everything around us has been designed and made with a purpose.
Torie Gill, Head of Technology at Royal High School Bath, said: “What I loved most about the day was seeing the students that struggle with school come alive learning in a practical way. Design Technology is a subject that gives students a level playing field. They can see themselves achieving with an outcome in a short space of time, they can express themselves in a way they haven’t before.
“It’s wonderful to hear there is a growing emphasis on Design Technology in primary schools for the future, this approach nurtures creativity, innovation and problem-solving skills from an early age. By implementing these strategies, we are preparing students for the rapidly changing job landscape and igniting their interest in the future STEM-related careers.”