Our vision is to give students the opportunity to develop practical skills through creative mediums. We want our students to see the world of design as a canvas for inspiration. Students should see the value of designs developing to better the world and for a growth in their understanding of living a healthy and productive life. We want our students to find the joy in learning and develop an inquisitive nature for the world around them.
We look to promote intrigue and curiosity for the way the world works and how best to help improve it for all.
We believe that Design and Technology at Rivers Academy is the platform from which students’ creativity, innovation and self-confidence combine to build a unique, dedicated learning environment.
Within the subject, we encourage students to develop a broad range of knowledge, transferable skills, and understanding that can then be applied to a range of settings, including problem solving, risk-taking, resilience and the ability to present. The curriculum prompts engagement through diverse activities, ranging from Design and Technology to Hospitality and Catering.
Students design and make products that not only solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts but at Rivers Academy we seek out issues and challenges that don’t yet exist. Through the study and evaluation of past and present designers and design movements such as Memphis, Bauhaus and Art Nouveau, students are exposed to a plethora of ideas and design principles that they can use to help mould their own design thinking and ultimately guide their own design philosophy. Design and Technology allows students to develop a critical understanding of its impact on daily life and the wider technological world through the inclusion of disciplines such as mathematics, science, engineering, computing and art.
Our intent in Food and nutrition is to have Students immerse themselves into a culinary journey of exploration which helps to feed their interest in understanding the nutrients and foods which give us such a platform to perform and enjoy the world. Through deep dives into different cultures and places around the world students are given the opportunities which may not normally be offered to them. Food and Nutrition gives students the skills needed to enhance their own lives and to better perform through a working knowledge of how foods react with us.
Design and Technology
At key stage 3 students are introduced to Design and Technology by following a carousel system which gradually develops core skills in three areas; Product Design, Graphics and Food & Nutrition. This carousel approach allows students to work with specialists within their fields, giving them a greater introduction to the design world. The intent for year 7 is to build a rapport with the subject and a hunger for developing skills. Through a sequence of units and briefs students develop their own ideas and using the design cycle, plan and create their own products.
In Key Stage 4 we offer the GCSE Design and Technology students will have coursework to complete which will make up the majority of their final grade and also an exam. Students will utilise their independent design skills from KS3 to direct their design following a brief. They will need to select appropriate materials and manufacturing processes and critically evaluate themselves.
Food and Nutrition
Food is a vital part of our daily lives. As our students become adults it is essential they are able to choose and safely prepare a range of quick nutritious dishes. Our hope is that through our Key Stage 3 units pupils are provided with a context to explore the richness and variety food adds to life, explore a number of multicultural and diet perspectives concerning food and develop an understanding of food that will enable them to create stylish modern dishes.
In Key Stage 4 we currently offer WJEC Hospitality and Catering which combines student’s practical skills with an understanding of the hospitality industry. The course is made up of both coursework and an exam, inclusive of a practical submission where students have to plan, prepare and present a two course meal. Students will be given a brief to which they will be able to demonstrate their understanding of foods, equipment, methods and varied diets to independently design a dish that will satisfy the brief. Alongside this student’s will enhance their ability to critique their work and make future improvements.
Whether it be for the end of key stage 3 or for the end of key stage 4 students will leave Design and Technology with a sense of accomplishment through a variety of projects which allow them to not only think about a design but see it through to construction.
The skills which are outlined in both the national curriculum and the relevant Key stage 4 Specifications have been integrated and blended throughout the academic journey to form a cohesive and holistic learning environment for the students to thrive.
Students work with written tasks and practical skills to help develop and understand a range of contexts, these are skills which allow for a range of cross curricular subjects from science to maths and English.
Throughout Design and Technology and Food and Nutrition our students are being taught transferable skills with heavy links to science and maths which helps solidify learning and correct misconceptions.
Students are taught the importance of iterative design processes as well as a working understanding of how industries operate.
Students develop skills which are able to be used beyond the confines of the academy and are able to integrate them into everyday life to grow in confidence and independence.