Bradbury School of Engineering
Design, Technology and Engineering
We are lucky enough to have a fully equipped, purpose-built centre, with two mixed material workshops, an Engineering / Metal workshop, a CAD suite and a dedicated cooking space. All this allows students to experience Design Technology from a young age and enables intermingling of staff, students and different subjects, creating a continuous, collaborative effort.
The department is made up of six teaching staff, all of whom are specialists in their subject area, and are ably supported by our technician. These are Charles – Head of Department and teacher of DEC, Tim - teacher of the Junior school, Rob – teacher of Engineering and Harry– teacher of GCSE and A Level Design Technology. We also have Anne who teaches Home Cooking Skills supported by Lucia and Harriet , Lloyd our full-time technician and, not forgetting our mascots - Lola and Clio the dogs.
All the staff bring a diverse range of skills and experience to the department which allows us to offer a wide variety of courses. These include: A level Product Design, GCSE Design & Technology, TQUK Design…Engineer…Construct!, BTEC Level 2 Engineering and BTEC Home Cooking Skills.
So, how do we get our students to succeed at GCSE and A level? Ultimately, we believe that a student's enjoyment towards the subject is as important and very much linked to the results they will eventually achieve.
It all starts in year 4 when they get their first taste of the technology department and of the design technology field. Each junior lesson starts with basic skills and core knowledge that covers all the basics of our subject at GCSE level. We utilise booklets with a writing frame which works well for many of our students and are easy to store, organise and mark. This learning is built upon with practical projects which encourage the students to research, draw, develop, make, and evaluate their own designs. We have a strong drive to get the younger boys to understand the environment and they can learn so much from both the natural and manmade world around them. Within recent years, we have also introduced 2D and 3D computer-aided design at an early age. We find some of our boys in particular excel in this area. We are keen that in the junior years, all students have a practical outcome to take home, to show off. This is important for their self-esteem and serves as a reminder of their success in Technology for years to come.
In year 9, the students opt to choose a specific subject area to study for a year before choosing whether to study it at exam level during years 10 and 11.
Level 1/2 BTEC First Award in Engineering
The Level 1/2 BTEC First Award in Engineering is a vocational and academic qualification that gives our students the opportunity to gain specific knowledge and understanding in practical engineering skills and the engineering world around us. The course gives learners an opportunity to gain a broad understanding and knowledge of the engineering sector whilst developing academic, communication and practical skills - welding, milling, using the lathes and hand techniques. For example: in year 7 they make tea-light holders; year 8 - Pewter jewellery. It also helps develop skills in English and Mathematics that relate to workplace scenarios.
GCSE Design Technology and A Level Product Design
We present senior Design Technology as a creative and collaborative process and aim to encourage an individual's tastes, talents and interests to come through in their work. Due to the diverse needs of the students, our learning approaches are constantly evolving to encourage more physical experimentation, problem solving, active and visual learning which run alongside the exam board requirements but also look ahead to further education and industry.
We entered Design Ventura Competition in 2019 and were thrilled to be winners of the Independent & International School’s Category.
TQUK Level 2 and Level 3, Design…Engineer…Construct! (DEC)
The ‘Design Engineer Construct!’ (‘DEC’) Learning Programme, created by education consultancy Class Of Your Own (COYO), offers a unique opportunity to develop the knowledge and skills fundamental to successful engagement in the professional aspects of architecture, engineering and construction. Here at More House we are proud to be the first school for students with specific learning difficulties to offer DEC level 2 and 3 and have delivered the programme since 2015. The course has a very practical design focus and teaches industry-standard digital modelling skills which are easily transferrable into the working world. Students also benefit from learning the importance of teamwork, time-management and communication. As a result, many of our students continue their future study at university and apprenticeships.
Through COYO’s ‘Adopt A School’ scheme, we have a long-term partnership with Laing O’Rourke (a multinational construction company), which enables our students to gain real first-hand experience in the world of digital engineering through professional talks and critique sessions in the classroom, organised visits to building sites and the provision of work experience.
BTEC in Home Cooking Skills
This course is based on the proposition that being able to cook is an essential life skill which empowers students to make changes that have benefits to health and wellbeing. Students begin by learning about the main food groups that together provide a healthy, balanced diet. They are then introduced to a range of simple dishes and learn different food preparation and cooking techniques. As they develop, they will learn how to cook more complex dishes safely and hygienically, and consider the factors that affect food choice, seasonality and food availability. We aim to give pupils the skills and confidence to enjoy cooking at home, to continue cooking for themselves and their families, and to inspire others.
As a department, we are lucky enough to have the time and resources to allow the students to explore the subject independently, to expand and realise their ideas, make mistakes and learn from them. We feel that this process is vital for students to ensure they are best prepared for their future education and careers. As a school, we celebrate the design-successes of our students with an annual display of students’ work and social media broadcasts, and are seeing year on year increased uptake of the subject.
More House recognises that a focus on Design Technology related subjects is a must in the 21st century education system and we feel it is critical to deliver the Design Technology curriculum in such a way as to ensure students’ potential is realised, and they are fully equipped to enter any of the rapidly expanding Design Technology pathways of their choosing.