Design & Technology activity at Kirkham Grammar School is based upon the philosophy that the subject should primarily be a problem-solving activity utilising both scientific and aesthetic data to achieve ones goal.  To this end, the Design & Technology department aims to provide a range of challenging practical projects for all students who undertake the subject.

The department is committed to providing a range of projects and challenges that allow pupils the opportunity to develop their knowledge, skill and confidence in the subject.  Projects commence with a design problem and related brief that allow all pupils the opportunity to develop a practical solution of their own design to a given problem.  In doing this the department introduces pupils to an increasing depth of knowledge of both design and technologically related issues.

Lower School

In the First Year, pupils undertake a materials-based project introducing them to resistant materials and the safe use of both hand and machine tools and an electronics project, where they design and manufacture a 'steady hand game'.  CAD/CAM (Computer Aided Design & Computer Aided Manufacture) is introduced through the design and manufacture of printed circuit boards for the electronics project and the use of the Internet as a research tool is also covered.  Pupils design and make a key ring and are also introduced to the concept of 'Structures' through a number of research assignments and practical projects.

In the Second Year pupils further develop their material and electronic skills through the design and manufacture of a novelty light project and a mobile phone or jewellery box.

Pupils in the Third Year undertake a graphical communication module of work covering both hand-drawing graphic skills and the use of the Techsoft design CAD package.  This leads into the area of rapid prototyping with pupils able to produce highly accurate 2D and 3D models of their designs on the department's CNC milling machines.  Further work on electronics is covered where pupils have to design and manufacture an electronic project of their choice.  Field trips to investigate different types of renewable and finite sources of energy production are also organised to supplement this work.

Middle School

GCSE Design and Technology

Design and Technology

Board: AQA

Specialising in Product Design, Electronic Products.

Product Design offers a multi-media approach to design and technology building on the knowledge and skills from the first three years.  The course commences with a common core of work including graphical communication techniques, an understanding of the working properties of compliant and resistant materials, CAD/CAM and related industrial manufacturing processes.  After this introductory session and the completion of an integrated mini-project, students may opt to specialise in either graphics or materials based work for their major project.

Electronic Products will allow students to study areas of electronics in greater depth.  In the first year of the course students will improve their knowledge and skills through a range of practical projects.  They will become familiar with materials, components, processes, techniques and industrial practice and will engage in designing and making quality products in quantity.  Students will also evaluate processes and products and examine the wider effects of electronics on society. They will have the opportunity of incorporating ICT and CAD/CAM into the projects as well as developing their skills in programming PIC chips.  After the introductory session, students will take on a project of their choice.


Design & Technology: Design Engineering

Board: OCR

A-level Design Engineering allows Sixth Form students looking to study engineering, design or architecture the opportunity to further broaden their knowledge of design and technology activity.  The course builds upon the work covered from either of our GCSE courses and includes work in electronics, pneumatics, microprocessor control, mechanisms, CAD/CAM, the study of materials and their working properties and further development of designing skills.

Design & Technology: Product Design

Board: AQA

A-level Product Design encourages Sixth Form students to take a broad view of design and technology, to develop their capacity to design and make products and to appreciate the complex relations between design, materials, manufacture and marketing.  The course builds upon the work covered from either of our GCSE courses and includes working to a brief, concept generation, sketching, model making, testing, study of materials, 3D CAD modelling and rapid prototyping.

Both courses offer a solid grounding for university degree courses of a similar theme as well as the scope to progress on the apprenticeship route into industry.


The Design & Technology department runs a Young Engineers and Jewellery Club open to pupils from all year groups.  Members of the club enter a wide range of local and national competitions each year including the Rotary Technology Tournament, the Young Engineers Royal Navy Challenge, the BAE Systems Schools and Colleges Micromouse Competition and the Young Engineer for Britain Competition.