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Teach Design Magazine Design & Technology and Engineering Education

Welcome: Teach Design By Teachers, For Teachers...

We are delighted to announce our partnership with The Restart Project. The social enterprise project based in London, teach product users essential repair and maintenance skills to combat electronic waste. Their exciting ‘Restart Party’s’ bring waste conscientious people together. The Restart Project will be working with our Foresight Teacher’s who kick off their work in September. Discover a little more about The Restart Project and their mission [page 14] and a little more about the Foresight Teacher Project in our next issue. Our first ever Design and Make the Future event was a huge success! Get a flavour of what it was all about [page 36] and make a note of next years date for what was branded the ‘cheapest and best CPD ever’ by our delegates. Why do we teach robotics? David Barlex and Torben Steeg put robotics into context and supply a framework for anyone looking to introduce this disruptive technology [page 28]. Do you teach in the capital? If you do, you may be interested in our London Schools Excellent Programme [page 49], which looks to enhance STEM through the use of robotics. 20 schools are involved in the programme, which launched in June and runs until next year. If you are not involved in the programme don’t despair! Jon Taylor talks through how VEX robotics penetrates the entire curriculum at Highgate School


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[page 08]. If you want a different approach to robotics, our Project Showcase [page 26] looks at PIC controlled bugs and supplies a shopping list of everything you need to get going. Our secret teacher reflects on a first year at the helm of a department [page 12], exploring the ups and downs of managing change and alludes to what’s next. From emerging departments to established ones, we take a trip to Yorkshire to explore a department case study [page 43] provided to us by David Young Community Academy in Leeds. ‘My Day Engineering’ [page 24] is a creative idea that is seriously gathering momentum. See how real life experiences of engineers are being shared with students in classrooms – inspirational!

This is a serious opportunity for those looking to lead the subject forward! Linking with CAD, our North Wales Tech Centre demonstrate what they have been up to in the world of 3D Printing recently [page 17], and in some fast STEM action, we look at how ‘Rocket Cars’ have been inspiring young people to get into Engineering [page 32]. As this academic years draws to an end we are already getting ready for the next! We are really looking forward to the opportunities of the new curriculum and we hope you will get involved with the initiative as much as possible! Make sure you continue to visit our website at www., to register and also join the discussion on Facebook and Twitter.

Pneumatics and hydraulics have perhaps been seen as difficult to access in our subject previously, however the emergence of ‘Small Machines’ turns everything on it’s head! Small Machine founder, Giles Grover, introduces these affordable and easily accessible products [page 40], giving some exciting tips for teachers too. Do you want to help modernise and improve Design and Technology and Engineering? We are looking for digital leaders in CAD to join an expert network of passionate teachers who will become trainers of Autodesk Inventor [page 22]. @teach_design

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for CPD events, updates, news & resources...

The Teach Design Magazine


What is the purpose of this magazine and how is it free?

Emotion in Design and Technology


How emotions should drive product design

VEX in the Curriculum


How VEX robotics can be a key part of a curriculum

“The Secret Teacher, End of Year One”


Light at the end of the tunnel

Rethinking Waste


The Restart Project and their mission in education

3D Printing


A case study of 3D printing at our North Wales Tech Centre

More than just a blockhead


Understanding the pedagogy in something so simple

Help modernise your subject


An opportunity to become part of a CAD trainer network



An exciting idea that is bringing engineers and students together

Project Showcase


Create a servo operated mechanical bug to boost electronics in your department

Teaching Robotics - Part of a bigger picture


What place does this disruptive technology have in our subject?

Inspiring New Engineers


Fast action through STEM and rocket cars

Design and Make the Future


An overview of our first national event

Small Machines


Pneumatics and hydraulics come to life

Departmental Showcase


David Young Community Academy show us around their department

You’ve got to be in it to win it


Get involved with a serious Textiles competition

London STEM Leaders


Our new programme aiming to enhance STEM delivery in London

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Magazine: Teach Design Showcasing Good Practice...

What is Teach Design? Teach Design is an initiative focussed on improving and modernising Design & Technology and Engineering education in the UK. The Teach Design team is made entirely of D&T and Engineering teachers, with an ethos of “for teachers by teachers”. We think Design and Technology and Engineering education is extremely important and plays a key role in producing the county’s designers and engineers of the future. We don’t believe in charging teachers extortionate prices for CPD and where possible we don’t like charging anything at all! We are funded through our kind partners, various grants and other companies that know the importance of making sure the next generation of employees is technological prepared.

is edited by the Teach Design Team, and supported by our partners. You will see a few advertisements but unlike other publications our magazine isn’t littered with these! D&T teachers, designers and engineers all contribute to the Teach Design magazine. The magazine has been designed so that each edition has specific articles for a specific purpose. Articles types include: Thinking Forward, Designer in Residence, Case Study, Secret Teacher, Thunking about D&T, Project Showcase, Departmental Showcase and Teach Design in Action, all explained in a little more detail below:

The Thinking Forward article is usually written by an academic researcher within D&T and aims to create thought provoking questions about D&T. The Designer in Residence shares industry standard experiences to help bridge the gap Since our formation in February 2013 we between education and the “real world”. have continued to establish a very strong Case Study articles showcase work from network of teachers, knowing that the best real teachers in schools and the not so source of CPD is from teachers themselves. secret, Secret Teacher article shares real experiences and worries about the D&T What is the Teach Design Magazine? profession. Thunking about D&T turns things upside down and asks searching The Teach Design magazine is free to questions about the subject’s purpose. every UK secondary school in hardcopy The centre pages pull out to become format, as well as being available in digital the Project Showcase, which includes format globally. There are three editions everything you need to know to kick-start per academic year (September, January and a new project in your department. The April), plus one special edition focusing or a Departmental Showcase is a virtual tour particularly important topic. The magazine (on paper) of a department we think are


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doing things pretty good. Finally, the Teach Design in Action explores everything we have been doing to help meet our aims since the last edition. We hope that you too will contribute to this CPD resource in the future and share your own good practice nationally. We believe in industry standard practice and think this should be the case in schools too where possible. This publication aims to lead by example and we really hope you think the same too! If you have any questions about the magazine or would like to contribute toward it, then please email

Emotion in Design and Technology Dr David Spendlove

The University of Manchester

Many years ago as a newly appointed Head of Department I inherited a set of what I would best describe as ‘standard projects’ that pupils were quite ‘happy’ to be involved with – in fact this was used as justification for their existence. The projects were not necessarily challenging, they were significantly gender biased, they were largely context free and they were particularly uninspiring. Unfortunately many of the projects I encountered are still around today, in many departments, and I have often wondered just how did D&T, as a potentially diverse and creative community, ended up adopting such a limited range of projects and activities when you consider just how many opportunities for rich and stimulating contexts that there are for delivering a high quality experiences. I know this might also offend some colleagues but in the grand list of all the problems we face in the world finding a place to hold your mobile phone, storing your CDs or how to move a ball bearing around a maze would not be high up on any such list. The reality is that many projects in D&T are undertaken in D&T with little valid reason for doing so. Returning back to my role as a new Head of Department I recognized that in this boys school there needed to be a stronger sense of design purpose; a recognition of the impact of design in society and the implications for getting it wrong. In doing so I was deliberately moving pupils (and

colleagues) out of their comfort zone and as a consequence destabilizing their norms, engaging in risky practice and creating an uncertain environment. All of which was no easy task. At the time I didn’t realize that what I was doing was creating an ‘emotionally literate’, challenging, stimulating and engaging environment. Therefore instead of making a bridge for structures and then smashing it, pupils were challenged with designing a device for transporting premature babies that would provide reassurance for anxious parents. Instead of weight lifting benches sixth form pupil’s shadowed doctors and nurses to identify the challenges on a cancer ward or issues to do with the sick, elderly or disabled. To misuse the phrase design wasn’t just about life or death – it was more important than that! However the emotional challenge didn’t stop there as whilst pupils were emotionally challenged they also had to be emotionally liberated when designing which meant there had to be a clear message that risk and uncertainty were key ingredients of creativity and therefore in a design context it was good to make mistakes when pushing at the boundaries. Creative risks were welcomed. Again this was far from easy as failure and risk are generally perceived as undesirable when in fact they are essential ingredient of any creative activity.

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There was also a further stage to developing pupils emotional capability and this related to their role in considering the needs of the user of any product that they were producing and their role in trying to understand the user. Pupils had to both understand the user physically but also consider the emotional elements of the users needs. For example in the contexts of structures in a medical unit the parents of the premature baby needed to feel reassured by the structure that was transporting their baby but without the structure appearing overly clinical or harsh.

In other contexts the pupil acting as a designer might need to stimulate other emotions such as engendering fear (as in security devices), excitement (as in child’s product) or trust (as in a product that you relied upon). The point that was emphasized was that products signal meaning and that meaning needed to be clearly signposted to the user so they could reflect that meaning. Therefore through the choice of shape, colours, texture, material, sound, smell and so on products should create the desired visceral responses in the user that the pupil intended.

Whilst this was very much my practice I have been fortunate over my years as an academic to explore those early ideas further and through research I have been able to identify and justify the what, why and how the various areas discussed could be better understood. Therefore I came up with a three stage (triadic) model, which identified the emotional elements of the ‘Person’, the ‘Process’ and the ‘Product’ which can be explained as follows:

Person domain Developing emotional capacity in students to engage in a creative process (person). Process domain Stimulating emotional engagement through appropriate learning contexts (process). Product domain Facilitating the emotional interfacing with creative outcomes (product).

It is important to point out that whilst I have identified each element as a domain you will notice within the diagram that each domain is fluid and flows between the other domains. The identification of individual domains merely serves to identify some of the emotional characteristics. How might this apply to my classroom? Whilst I have briefly explained the theory of emotion related to the three domains it is important to note this work has its origins in the classroom and it grew out of good practice. I also indicated that it had been used in a boy’s school but the principles were also used in a girls school, a mixed school, a comprehensive school and a grammar school therefore the relevance and application are universal. The central points are however that: • Designing is not a neutral activity – we all have values which are reflected in our

emotions. Something as basic as a choice of colour will psychologically, culturally and physically make us ‘feel’ something in a different way. • Pupils should develop a vocabulary of emotion as part of their developing emotional literacy. As such Design and Technology has a valuable role to play in this as it relates to the designed and manufactured world. • Our emotions drive us to think in a certain way and often when designing we need to move away from ‘gut feelings’ and think counter intuitively in order to achieve more effective outcomes. • Whilst I don’t subscribe to emotional intelligence (as our emotions are far from intelligent) I do think that developing intelligence around our emotions through developing emotional literacy is central to anyone making decisions on behalf of others. Therefore this applies to pupils who

may be making decisions in their role of designer. • As much as this is about pupils it is also about teachers understanding their own emotions. Teachers need to be as creative and risky as their pupils but often feel constrained for a whole variety of reasons. I am conscious (I think) that I have given a very brief overview of something that is quite complex and may be far removed from many D&T departments. I have also met enough D&T teachers to know that some will reject such thinking as outlined above. However D&T is a potentially unique subject that has unfortunately failed to consistently deliver high quality experiences for learners. Considering emotions represents just one of many important ways in which the subject can improve but it requires all teachers and pupils to be emotionally literate and creative risk takers!

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VEX in the Curriculum

Jon Taylor London STEM Leader

VEX Robotics is an excellent platform for the delivery of all things robotics both within the classroom and at an extracurricular level. VEX Robotics embraces problem solving through design, testing, manufacturing and programming. The great thing about VEX is that the versatility of the product caters for many different needs and can be utilised and implemented in many ways. For instance at Highgate School we utilise the VEX Robotics platform in our curriculum and for after school robotics clubs and teams.

of their design. Although each pupil is assigned a main role, all pupils work together as a team throughout striving to achieve the best possible outcome. During the testing stage pupils are provided with a controller to allow them to get to grips with controlling and driving the robots. The competition element is played out in a round-robin format with each team playing each other, the team with the highest overall score wins.

This format was delivered over 3 or 4 lessons (depending on how the lessons VEX Robotics @KS3 coincided with school cycle) each lasting 100 minutes, which a Base Bot assigned to At Highgate we have recently introduced each team. The final lesson was reserved the VEX platform into our Year 9 for the competition element meaning curriculum based around the “Swept Away� 200/300 minutes were available for pupils classroom competition. Teams are set the to develop a solution to allow them to task of designing and constructing a method compete in the competition. The pupils of moving the game objects around the were really engaged with this format and field and into the scoring zones. Class sizes really enjoyed the competition element. of 20/22 pupils are split into teams of 4 The fact that by the competition stage or 5, with each individual taking on a role each group were using different designs within the team. The different roles include and not a single team had approached the Design, Mechanical & Structural Engineers brief in the same way really showed the and Data Analysts. Design Engineers are pupils that there are many different ways in responsible for designing and developing approaching and successfully fulfilling a brief. the method of moving the game of objects. Mechanical & Structural Engineers are Next academic year (2014-2015) we responsible for gearing and assembling are tweaking the delivery slightly by the moving arm and its attachments. Data introducing a programming element and Analysts are responsible for conducting the providing a prebuilt arm mechanism. This testing of the mechanism and attachments will minimise the time taken to construct whilst working alongside the other team a relatively simple arm mechanism and members to further improve the efficiency allow pupils to concentrate more on


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the attachments and programming the robot to move autonomously. We have invested in further Base Bots to allow for smaller group sizes (3 per group) and “upgraded� them to include integrated motor encoders and bump switches. The integrated motor encoders will allow the pupils to precisely program how the robot moves and the bump switches will allow for further interaction with the game field and elements. This will introduce a new role of Programmer alongside the Mechanical & Structural Engineers. The testing and analysis elements will now be the responsibility of the whole team. The competition format will change slightly also, to bring it in line with the VRC (VEX Robotics Competition) with a 15 second autonomous period followed by 1 minute 45 seconds of driver control. The 2014-15 academic year will also see the integration of VEX IQ into Highgate Year 6 & 7 curriculums. Year 6 will work in pairs exploring the basics of programming using Modkit to control their robots to complete a range of set tasks. Year 7 will use VEX IQ to further develop their programing skills alongside constructing and possibly 3D printing new parts for their robots. VEX @ GCSE, Level 1/2 Engineering & Computer Applications & A Level We have decided to implement the AQA Level 1/2 Engineering & Computer

Applications as a bolt on to the AQA GCSE Design Technology: Systems & Control. VEX will play in part in this by providing the platform for the Level 1/2 Engineering & Computer Applications Controlled assessment task 2 - Programming Task. The purpose of this assignment is to allow pupils the opportunity of demonstrating their acquired skill and understanding of using computers in a control context. An industry based brief will be set, such as developing a sorting system or recovery system of some description which pupils will then tackle in small groups. Again using a base bot as a framework, pupils will explore the various sensors and programmable inputs available and link them up to their assigned base bot. Pupils will then use Flowol to program their base bots to complete the set task autonomously. The Engineering Notebook element of the VEX Robotics Competition (which competing teams create alongside their robots to document their progress and reasoning) has also been utilised by pupils as evidence towards their GCSE and A Level Systems & Control coursework. A cohesive and well-structured Engineering Notebook acts as firm evidence for both the Making and Testing & Evaluation criterions.

Summary In summary, there are many different ways in which you can implement VEX Robotics into your curriculum. At Highgate systems and control is at the core of the curriculum right the way from Year 4 with levers and linkages all the way through to A Level. Therefore VEX Robotics fits like a glove and pupils enjoy direct exposure to the platform in Year 6, 7, 9 and at GCSE & A Level. It is a very versatile platform and one which we would highly recommend. If you would like to get in touch please feel free to contact us. @JonTDesignTech Competition For a chance to win a VEX Robotics Classroom and Competition Super Kit worth ÂŁ750.00, simply send your name, role, and school address to: This competition is open to all secondary schools in the UK (Teach Design staff are not allowed to enter). Closing date July 22nd 2014. The winner will be notified by email and will receive the kit within 2-3 weeks of the closing date. Good luck!

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Inspire. Empower. Engage.

GIVING STUDENTS TOMORROW’S SKILLS TODAY As the pioneers of 3D printing and global leaders in the industry, education is one of 3D Systems’ top priorities. Our mission is to equip and empower students with 3D design and printing skills, fostering creativity, exploration and innovation.

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“The Secret Teacher, End of Year One” Secret Teacher

Head of Product Design

There is light at the end of the tunnel. At the time of writing, it is May half term, with only 7 more weeks until the summer break. Last Friday, I managed to finish writing the last project of my new curriculum. I’ve made the projects, figured out what materials I need, written the lesson plans and created all the worksheets. A year ago I accepted my job and immediately set about thinking about what projects I could teach which fitted the following criteria: 1) It should teach skills which current (and future) industry requires of students 2) It should engage the students and they should enjoy it, and 3) I should enjoy teaching it (not just because it meets criteria 1 & 2, but because it is fun and interesting – I do want to enjoy my job after all!).


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Once I knew how long the lessons were and how long I had each class for, I came up with the plan (geared towards GCSE Product Design) which you can see to the side. The areas of the new National Curriculum met are highlighted. In issue 2 I wrote about how it is a difficult task to modernise a curriculum, especially if you are starting again from scratch. I also mentioned that it wasn’t impossible (like a cow walking downstairs). I have demonstrated that this year. With the exception of the assessment criteria (I have been waiting on the school’s decision for the school-wide approach), my initial target has been met. Why not set yourself a target of doing the same? Here are some words of encouragement for this: (These should come both my experiences and the effect on my reinvigorated students) Firstly from me; you can do it. It isn’t actually that hard; take some shortcuts! There are so many teachers sharing resources on a variety of forums (dtdropbox, twitter, facebook etc) that you could build a whole new curriculum collated from other teacher’s projects. I will be hosting all of mine on the teach design forum for you to access. Secondly, having thrown out the steady hand game, memo board and bird box style projects, the vast majority of students

are now raving about Design & Technology. No longer do the students think the subject is woodwork. They are queuing up outside the door to get in at breaktimes and after school. They are engaged, interested and excited about Product Design. No longer do I have the embarrassment of teaching projects which were taught to the student’s parents, instead they are actually asking to come in and see what we are doing! (Note to self: I need to organise a parent design event!) Even other teachers are blown away by what is going on in the department. I have a steady stream of visitors and I ask them; “What comes to mind when you think of the word ‘Technology’? Is the answer hand steady games or is it modern tech such as mobile phones?” You can guess what the answer is, which makes it easy to explain why I am teaching students to design products, which will prepare them for what is happening in industry, not making games which will gather dust. Within the short space of time since September, the GCSE Product Design intake has risen by 100%. Not bad for the first year. Would that have happened with the old projects? I think not. Now it’s your turn.

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Rethinking Waste

Janet Gunter

Co-Founder The Restart Project

We live in exciting times, where teaching of coding and digital manufacturing in schools can open up new possibilities. Students can have a go at making stuff and apps – and even building businesses from these. Young people today are growing up in a digital world that is so pervasive, yet much of the material and physical infrastructure which underpins our world lies out of view or closed off. Students may have little notion that the internet is indeed a “thing”. (Anybody over 30 remembers modems and LAN networks - we remember being plugged in to something.) And some students may not even remember a time when mobiles were not sealed, sleak objects, a time when they were easy to open to change a SIM card or a battery. Just as tablets open up huge possibilities, they come with an alienation from what’s inside, as well as upgrade-obsessed, shortened attention spans. There is a real danger we are forgetting that electronics are made of parts that should be replaced and fixed when they break. The “cloud” is invisible and our devices are becoming disposable ways of access it. Electronic waste is the fastest growing waste stream in the UK. The electronic waste produced in one year in the UK would fill a line of lorries from Lands End to John O’Groats and recycling alone cannot save us. It is simply not efficient enough in terms of energy and raw

materials, as in most electronic devices, over half of the energy used in their whole lifecycle is spent in production. We need to change our relationship with electronics. We started The Restart Project after working for years in Africa, Asia, and Latin America using technology in human development projects. It pained us to see our friends and neighbours back home here in the UK adopting such a throw-away attitude to electronics. Our organisation hosts community “Restart Parties” - three hour, free events where volunteers help gadget owners to diagnose what is wrong and fix things together. We’ve hosted over 50 such events in the London area, helped over 1,000 people save over 895 kilos of eletronics from waste. Our aim is to increase demand for repair and repair skills, to stimulate a bottom-up reskilling and economies of repair. We think there are real opportunities to generate income and create jobs in electronics repair. Here’s a personal example of how person to person interaction could be the basis for new, localised economies of repair. I bought my first smart phone over a year ago. I liked it as an ergonomic object, but after only a day or two of using it, I noticed it could barely handle simple tasks. We

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tried in vain to find ways of coping. Then it dawned on us, there was no coping – the phone was shipped with an unusable hardware and software configuration. We spent months trying to find a solution. There were heaps of comments on online forums, but nothing definitive, and nothing that somebody like me could understand. We tried and failed numerous times. I despaired. Then I learned at one of our Restart Parties that Ben, a 24 year-old repair volunteer who studies electronic engineering, had the same mobile. Later he told me he “cracked” the problem. Ben walked me through the installation of the alternative operating system (known as ROM). I did the last steps myself. I cannot describe the feeling. I took back control of my mobile. No shop or storefront would go the extra mile like Ben. So let’s imagine the rebirth of local economies of maintenance and repair, where you could easily find a trusted “Ben” near you every time you had a problem like mine. You could meet him at a monthly Restart Party. Or you meet him at a café and you could pay him in cake or in cash, which ever works. Or you could find a


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number of Bens at a weekly pop-up clinic in the local community centre, or at a small storefront they rent together, subsidised by local authorities. To make this happen, we need to invest in skills and a critical consciousness in young people. This is where design and technology teachers come in. Before children start learning how to fix, they need to understand how things are put together, what they are made of, and how they break. This learning can begin quite early. The one event we did in a school revealed the fearlessness of presecondary students in taking electronics apart and their curiosity to learn what fails. This exercise can be really transformative for those who are rarely allowed to do this kind of thing at home. Anybody who fixes can tell you, it started with taking things apart. Moreover, disassembly can take on new significance when linked to science and geography, by revealing what raw materials go into our electronics and where they come from in the world. It can also be used to illustrate the importance of properly disposing of end-of-life electronics

through recycling, and recouping raw materials. We would propose that students learn the basics of maintenance of electronics and electricals – how to change a fuse, a battery in a laptop, tablet or mobile, as well as how to open devices for cleaning, and eventually replacing faulty parts. There is a spectrum of activity which can qualify as fixing – for us it is anything that ensures an owner of a gadget feels they can use it for longer is “fixing”. We hope this will be a first of a number of contributions to this magazine, and that we can open up a channel of communication with Design and Technology teachers. Our idea is to collaborate with teachers and help them bring the fun and empowering spirit of The Restart Project into classrooms across the country. We look forward to hearing your feedback and ideas.

3D Printing Gethin Williams Ysgol Dinas Brân @DT_YDB

When asked if we were interested in being a ‘Tech Centre’ we gladly jumped at the opportunity not only to showcase the fantastic work that our pupils produce but also it gave us the opportunity to support fellow DT teachers with new specialist equipment.

that they have now access to it in their school. We also introduced 3D printing at KS4 and KS5 this year and the outcomes have been outstanding. Not only has it given the students the opportunity to add another process to the product but as a department it has raised our pass rates.

3D Printing at YDB

Primary Experience

As a centre we had previous experience of working with 3D printers and we were ‘Sector leading practitioners’ in CAD and Autodesk Inventor.

As previously mentioned the benefits of introducing pupils to these processes earlier we decided to visit a few of our feeder primary schools and also invite in to do some primary liaison. We took the Cube with us to the primary schools and talked briefly about 3D printing. We then sent an earbud wrap that one of our students had designed to print. The amount of enthusiasm that this generated blew us away.

Once we received the CubeX and Cube from 3DSystems we instantly incorporated CAD and 3D printing into our KS3 curriculum. This was a new challenge for us as the pupils had no previous experience in Inventor as we didn’t introduce them to it until KS4. We thought that introducing them to the process earlier on would lead them to become independent learners at KS4 and KS5. The project we decided to introduce was the ‘earbud wrap’ in year 8. Firstly we introduce them to Inventor by working through the scooter project from Teach Design. This gives the pupils the basic introduction and leads them on nicely to design their own products. Once the pupils had gone through the design process and have a final solution we then print them using the CubeX and Cube. Our students have been amazed at this fantastic new technology and can’t believe

The plan was to be there for 1 hour but due to the questions and interest shown by the young pupils we spent over 2 and a half hours. Our plan for next year is to introduce 3D printing into our primary liaison sessions and we are planning on using the Hexbug resource where some of the tasks will be taught by the primary teacher with support from ourselves and then the pupils will design a new case for a Hexbug in Inventor and then we will print each one on the CubeX. We have been in contact with a couple of the schools and currently they are looking at the resource.

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come 1st and 2nd respectively. Due to the success of both teams we decided to raise funds and purchase 8 tumbler kits and introduce VEX robotics to our new look curriculum. We introduced it into year 9 in September 2013 and during the unit pupils gain knowledge of engineering as well as systems. They improve their team work skills as they work in groups of 4 or 5 and each member of the team has an important role within the group. The feedback from pupils has been good especially when it comes to the testing stage, where they will compete against each other.

> Inventor Training

Training at YDB In March of this year we held a free Autodesk Inventor training course where delegates had the opportunity to gain hands on experience with Inventor. At the end of the day the delegates were also put through an ACU (Autodesk Certified User) exam for free. Some quotes from the delegates:

> GCSE Product Design


> GCSE Product Design

< GCSE Product Design

Autodek Invenor As a centre we have been using Autodesk software for the past 10 years. We are fortunate enough to have 2 members of staff that are accredited trainers of Inventor. Last year due to the experience of our A-level students in using Inventor we decided to enter them for the ‘Autodesk Inventor Certified User exam’ where every single one passed the exam at the first attempt. This taking into account that these pupils were only introduced to Inventor in year 10 therefore the future is exciting and we can’t wait to see what our current year 8 pupils will produce when they are at KS4 and KS5. VEX Robotics > 3D Printing Architectural Models


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For the past few years we have competed in the regional competition our year 12 and year 10 (extra-curricular) teams have

‘’The opportunity to learn in a supported environment.’ ’ We have also held 3D printing training sessions where delegates can visit the department to see what we do with 3D printing and also come to ask questions and receive some advice on this new technology. Again the days have been very well received. ‘’Excellent knowledge of the product.’ ’ ‘’Being able to ask questions that arise as you find them whilst talking.’ ’ ‘’Excellent opportunity to troubleshoot 3D Printing issues with trainer and like minded colleagues.’ ’ We would like to take this opportunity to thank Teach Design, 3D Systems. Autodesk, CLEAPPS and VEX Robotics for their continued supports. If you have any questions regarding anything from this article then please get in touch with myself at:

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More than just a blockhead Katy Barnes

Archbishop Holgateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s School

Have you ever seen a product and thought I could make that? Everywhere we go there are products which are very simple but that look very effective. Blockheads are one of those products. A small wooden character which is made from a series of accurately manufactured cubes of wood. Selling on the internet for an average of $40 these wooden characters are excellent motivation for students to aim for a high quality, professional looking product, which is simple to make. Blockhead introduces students to hand tools in Design and Technology and the importance of accurately marking out and measuring components correctly so that they can create a professional final product. The primary purpose of making the Blockheads is to teach students all about accuracy which can be achieved through the exploration and correct use of a range of tools and equipment. Students begin to understand that products are designed for clients and have to be produced to a certain standard in order to be successful in the real world. The project engages students as they take home a product which they can see is successful in the real world. Which also provides opportunities for the subject to convey a professional, fulfilling and positive message to parents. At our school Blockhead is a six hour project, the technician provides each student with the two different thicknesses of wood. Students then have to mark

this out and cut it down to the required number of pieces. The final character is made from wood cut down into 2 large cubes for the head and body and 4 smaller cubes for the hands and feet. Students follow their working drawing and develop their skills with hand tools to create pieces which are identical to each other, making them look more professional and something which would sell in the real world. Blockheads contain no glue and are assembled together with string and a single dowel joint. In order to create a product which looks professional and that would be acceptable in the real world, students are introduced to the importance of tolerance in product design. All the way through the project students self-assess and evaluate pieces which have been manufactured and test them with digital callipers against their working drawing with the understanding that they will be allowed a 2mm tolerance. To complete the project students are taught how to finish woods with paint by masking off areas to get a professional finish with a single colour. There is no designing in the project as students are all working from the same working drawing. Therefore, if they have manufactured the product well they should be able to interchange pieces from their Block Head with other students work creating great opportunities for peer assessment.

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Help modernise your subject! Steve Parkinson

Teach Design

In collaboration with Autodesk, we are looking for passionate Design and Technology and Engineering teachers across the UK who want to train other teachers how to use Autodesk Inventor. This will involve hosting training sessions and providing training to other Design and Technology and Engineering teachers. Autodesk Inventor is an industry standard piece of software. It is available to all schools for FREE. Autodesk’s ‘Design the Future’ programme means that there is a wealth of teaching resources available for FREE, including schemes of work, lesson plans and presentations. In addition to Inventor, Autodesk also provide a range of other types of software. These are also FREE to use in the classroom and include architectural and electrical. The range of FREE 123D apps makes designing and making on tablet devices a straightforward process, however these can also be used through a web browser for instant use, or downloaded for further features. Our relationship with Autodesk has developed significantly over the last year and as the new academic year approaches, we are collectively looking to help teachers as much as we did last year! As demand and popularity for the software increases, we need more trainers!


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Are you…. • A dedicated and passionate teacher? • Have experience in using CAD or desperate to use it? • Interested in training and sharing best practice with other teachers • Excited about working within an expert network of teachers? • Looking to make a difference in the improvement & modernization of D&T and Engineering? If you feel you answer YES to the questions above, then we would really love to hear from you! Contact uk to express an interest in becoming an Autodesk Inventor Trainer.. We will arrange for a specialist trainer to come to your school to provide FREE training. The trainer will then be required to run their own course and train other teachers in Autodesk Inventor! By going through this process, the trainer will then become an accredited Autodesk Trainer, able to deliver Inventor training throughout the UK.


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#mydayengineering @MyDayEngineer

Hardly a month goes by without there being another report about the predicted shortage of engineers in the UK or a new initiative being launched to encourage students into engineering careers. Engineering is in everything but how many teachers know what engineers really do every day?


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According to Engineering UK (@_ EngineeringUK), over the next decade we will need 87,000 new engineers. To help fill the shortage, they have set up Tomorrow’s Engineers (http://www. to engage schools by engineers themselves going in to schools to talk about and demonstrate engineering. They have a target of reaching 100,000 students a year. This is one of a number of similar programmes where engineers need to commit their time, often using holiday to go in to the schools. My Day Engineering spreads the word about what engineers do in a different way by connecting engineers with schools via Twitter. It’s a simple concept: engineers tweet about what they are doing each day using #mydayengineering and these are retweeted by @MyDayEngineer so that schools, young people’s organisations and anyone else who is interested in engineering can follow to find out what engineers really do. As we only ask for 140 characters and may be a photo, it’s a great way for engineers to promote engineering regularly to a large, global audience. The hashtag has been running for a year now and 140 engineers have tweeted about their days, around 1,500 of them. Even though there are currently around 1,200 followers, My Day Engineering has a potential reach of 700,000 people, through those followers retweeting and favouriting tweets.

Schools are using the account as a way of promoting engineering to their students. The design and technology department at Burnham Grammar School (@BgsDt) has used the tweets to show a snippet of the real world and for students to point their parents to as to why they should study D&T. The tweets show that engineers have the “I can” attitude and raise the profile of engineering. The school also uses the tweets to discuss maths and applying it logically. And, finally, to dispel the perception that engineers are too serious, they even find some of them just plain funny! There is not only a shortage of engineers generally, but a shortage of female engineers. Only 7% of engineers are women. To address this, the Women’s Engineering Society (@WES1919) launched National Women in Engineering Day. This year was the first one and was on 23rd June. It presented a great opportunity to show female engineers in their workplace as they tweeted their #IAmAnEngineer selfies. @MyDayEngineer retweeted selfies from over 50 women working in engineering, showing that engineers work in diverse workplaces, from construction sites to offices to laboratories and workshops. Follow @MyDayEngineer or search for #mydayengineering to show your students what engineers really do, every day.

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ug 4-legged Walking B

Project Showcase... In each edition we will share and look to equip you with resources and ideas you can use to introduce modern technologies into teaching and learning in design and technology.

Pedagogy This project is relatively quick and easy but it addresses a number of key skills in modern Design Technology. Students will learn to solder, discover servos and venture into some basic programming. By creating a bug like robot, students are starting to look at biomimicry – imitating nature.

and a PICAXE Using 2 servos tic is miniature robo microcontroller, th e Th lk. wa ogrammed to creature can be pr side the bug rocks it from servo at the front of The the rear legs in turn. to side, lifting each of bug by push ing the leg rear servo propels the ilst ound backwards wh in contact with the gr forwards. bring ing the lifting leg

Once these basic skills are mastered, this project can lead on to more advanced variations – use CAD to design and produce an insect-like chassis to mount the servos in, make more elaborate creatures with more than 2 servos and introduce sensors for obstacle detection. Students can also create more advanced programs to improve the efficiency of the walking motion.

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R apid

2x Miniature se rvo 1x PIC AXE-08 Prototype bo ard 1x PIC AXE-08 M2 chip 3x AAA batter y box with sw itch 4x Steel shafts 37-0350 2x 3-way pin header s 2x 330 Ohm resistor A few scraps of wire

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What is a Servo?

A servo is a type of motor (or actuator) that is commonly used in robotics. A servo

#1 Full assembly of th

usually consists of an electric motor, gearbox and some electronic feedback all housed

e 4-legged walki

ng bug.

in the same package. The advantage over a standard motor are that they can be

precisely positioned. To tell the servo what position to move to requires a pulse signal

– the length of the pulses determines the position. It’s a type of PWM (pulse width

modulation) signal. In the PICAXE Programming Editor, there is a pair of commands called ‘servo’ and ‘servopos’ to create these pulses.


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tp s) on ou (front leg o v le r se the midd ; set the position utput 2 to o 0 5 n 1 o , s) .1 g ar le ser vo c ser vo (re ; set the on ti si o p 0 , 15 ser vo c.2 ug ve the b de to mo ; main co complete de main: to one si w movement to g u b e ; tilt th to allo r 500ms lete d Orde r C o de s c.1, 125 ;pause fo rear legs to comp ser vopo vement o e m th 0 e w v 0 llo o 5 ;m to a pause r 500ms e lete s c.2, 275 ; pause fo to the other sid ement to comp ser vopo 37-1330 g ov u b m e 0 w th 0 llo 5 lt a ti ; to pause r 500ms lete er way s c.1, 175 13-1202 ; pause fo rear legs the oth to comp ser vopo ovement e m th 0 e w v 0 llo o 5 a m e se ; d to u o pa 13-5022 r 500ms e main c s c.2, 125 ; pause fo to the star t of th ser vopo k c a b 0 18-2901 ; loop pause 50 in 0 (Pack of 50) goto ma init:

22-0500 62-0361

www.r ap need fo r the pr – all the oje www.r parts y apidon ct ou conta in m/TD ing mor Bug ed sample PICAX eta ils on the p - a zip file E roject a www.p nd icaxe.c programs o PICAX E progr m – download amming t editor s he free oftware

Your bugs can be as complex as you like, but to get you started why not try this really simple method?

ip To o ls & E q u

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Making the bug...

#3 Program PICAXE le p m a S

Soldering iro Solder Side cutter s



1) Assemble the PICAXE-08 prototype board and insert the PICAXE chip 2) Bend the steel rods to mak e 4 legs – 2 front legs and 2 back legs 3) Using hot-melt glue, fix the legs to the servo control horns 4) Self-adhesive sticky foam pads can be used to fix the servos and PCB to the battery holder 5) Get programming and test ing!

pads d sticky foam Double side gun Hot-melt glue


iddle. ecise

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Mainly Designing Mainly Making Designing & Making Exploring the Technological Society

√ #4 All of th e compo nents a They ca re readil n be eas y availb ily recyc le from led and Rapid. reused. teach design | 027

Teaching Robotics Part of a bigger picture? David Barlex & Torben Steeg

The new programme of study for design & technology indicates that pupils should be taught: To apply computing and use electronics to embed intelligence in products that respond to inputs [for example, sensors], and control outputs [for example, actuators], using programmable components [for example, microcontrollers]. Clearly teaching robotics would go a long way to meeting this requirement and many schools already have short units of work which involve building and programming simple robots; lessons involving PICAXE, Lego Mindstorms or Vex Robotics spring to mind. While these activities are without doubt useful we think there is a bigger picture to be considered. It is important that pupils understand that there is much more to robots and robotics than they might realize from their basic work in building and programming. So letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s start at the beginning by considering what a robot is. There is a surprisingly wide range of definitions for a robot. For example: A mechanical device that resembles a living animal and moves automatically or by remote control The Tech Museum of Innovation guide/glossary.html An easily reprogrammable, computercontrolled device that can physically


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manipulate its surroundings Telecom books blog A robot is a mechanical or virtual, artificial. A robot is usually an electro-mechanical system, which, by its appearance or movements, conveys a sense that it has intent or of its own. Wikipedia And from Illah Nourbakhsh a particularly intriguing suggestion: In robots we have invented a new species that operates as a living glue between our physical world and the digital universe we have created. Robots can operate in the real world and at the same time can be fully connected to the digital world. Adapted from pages xiv & xv Robot Futures 2013 And it might be useful for pupils to appreciate what different sorts of robots can do. The following list distinguishes different types of robots by their capabilities: • Tele-robots; guided by remote control by a human operator • Telepresence robots; similar to telerobots but with feed back of video, sound and other data to allow the operator to feel more like they are ‘in’ the Robot • Static robots; such as the arms widely employed in factories and laboratories around the world • Mobile robots; which needs to navigate and perform tasks with or without human intervention • Autonomous robots; able to carry out tasks without intervention and obtain power from their environment • Android; robot built to mimic humans And we can think about the wide range of technologies that are brought together to create the elements of a robot in anthropomorphic terms as follows: • A Brain: microprocessor, microcontroller, programming • A Skeleton: a mechanical and structural frame • Muscles: hydraulic, electric, pneumatic • Mobility: wheels, legs, tracks, propellers,

rolling • Senses, e.g. o Eyes: cameras, light and infra- red sensors, magnetic field sensors o Ears: sound, ranging sonar o Communications: video, sound, IR, radio, internet, GPS data o Balance: accelerometers • Food: power source, charging device Although we must bring a note of caution here - such a list might encourage pupils to think of robots as equivalent to humans and this leads to very difficult territory. Robots as an idea go back many centuries as Elly Truit notes in her piece on the secret history of early automota (Westlake, S (Ed) Nesta 2014) and in science (sometimes called speculative) fiction they are a staple beginning perhaps with Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein published in 1818 and now including a wide range some benign, as in Star Wars’ C3PO some much less so as in the Terminator films. In recent times robots have been developed for manufacturing applications. And whilst these initially operated in large scale in, for example, motorcar production, smaller, much less expensive industrial robots are now available. What has changed since the turn of the century is that a mixture of new technologies (such as solid state accelerometers), advances in older technologies (in particular microcontrollers and artificial intelligence programming) and plummeting costs have come together to make sophisticated robots both possible and much more accessible (in terms of both cost and user-friendliness). The Baxter Robot (Rethink Robotics 2013) which is small, inexpensive and requires human instruction to perform simple operations is a good example. The potential for robots to be less than benign is illustrated by these two examples. Firstly, the French football team have claimed that a drone was used to spy on a practice session at their training camp in the World Cup in Brazil; this is in itself a trivial story (unless you happen to be French!) but it suggests the impact on privacy of a future where drones are ubiquitous. Secondly Google has in the last year bought 8 large, significant robot companies for around $100m.

These include the military robot maker Boston Dynamics. Speculation is that these purchases will strengthen both its work on driverless cars and its ability to map more accurately and in more locations. To quote Forbes: So, we’ve got the potential for killer robots that know where you live and can outrun you when they find you. What’s not to like? What The Heck Will Google Do With These Scary Military Robots? sitesroberthof/2013/12/14/what-the-heckwill google-do-with-these-scary-military-robots/ These examples point to the impact of robots on society. Consider this possibility in your future. You are being driven by a ‘google car’ or something similar. There is an accident ahead involving a school bus turning over and blocking your path. The robot driver has two options. Brake and continue towards the bus in which case the car will crash into the bus and almost certainly kill some children or brake and take evasive action in which case your car will miss the bus but there is a high probability that your car will overturn and you will be killed. What decision should the robot make – kill you and save the children or vice versa? Whether robots should be allowed to make such moral decisions has been a theme in science fiction including the recent films I Robot and the remake of Robocop. In his short story Robot Smog Illah Nourbakhsh describes a butterfly robot that is solar powered, has no off switch, and can make eye contact with humans thus recreating the breathtaking effect of one or more butterflies circling your head as described in the novel One Hundred Years of Solitude (Marquez 1967). The idea of recreating novel and desirable experiences through the use of robots is just one example of the myriad of new products and services that will be developed through robotics. Note, however that in the short story the butterfly robots are very popular, escape from their owners and invade large amounts of public space leading people to wear dark glasses to avoid making eye context with them. Overall people stop enjoying public spaces. Although perhaps far fetched this tale (along with others

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written by Norbakhsh) is salutary with regard to the impact beyond intended benefit of robots in our society. This has led Nourbakhsh to argue for an approach to robotics that isn’t driven solely by elites in their search for financial gain and power. Robotics is becoming a potent force, but, like much of technology, it has no innate moral compass. It is destined to influence society, and I believe the early adopters are already apparent: corporations, militaries, governments, and a privileged band of technically savvy individuals. What is missing from this list is the interests of citizens and local communities, motivated neither by power nor by economic value, hoping to contribute to a sustainable quality of life. Our challenge and opportunity lies in becoming the vanguards of ever-better robot futures, and this means we must bend the lines of influence that robotics will forge.

• Additive manufacturing • Artificial intelligence • Augmented reality • Big data • Intelligent matter • Internet of things • Neurotechnology • Robotics • Synthetic biology We hope to discuss further the idea of disruptive technologies and robotics as a disruptive technology in a future edition of Teach Design and will use as the basis for this discussion the chapter Thinking about disruptive technologies which will appear in the book Learning to Teach Design & Technology in the Secondary School, 3rd edition edited by Gwyneth Owen Jackson to be published by Routledge in 2015.

Robot Futures page 119 Intriguing as we find the possibilities of teaching pupils about robotics from a wider perspective than building and programming we are concerned that such work should be part of a bigger picture in design & technology education. We believe that the development of technological perspective is an important and much under represented aspect of the design & technology curriculum in secondary schools. Acquiring technological perspective provides young people with the intellectual tools to decide for themselves how various technologies should be deployed in their society. This would enable young people to consider the impact of various technologies on their lives and take part, from an informed position, in debates concerning whether and how technology should be deployed in the society in which they live. There is a wide range of such technologies that will have significant impact on society, so called disruptive technologies, and we believe that robotics is just one example of such technologies. Hence we make the argument that in teaching for technological perspective young people should be taught about a range of disruptive technologies. We have developed the following list as suitable for inclusion in the secondary school curriculum:


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References Marquez, G. (1967) One Hundred Years of Solitude London, Penguin Books Ltd. Nourbakhsh, I. (2013) Robot Futures. Cambridge, Massachusetts, MIT Press Rethink Robotics(2013) http://www. Accessed 27 April 2014 Shelley, M (1999) Frankenstein Hertfordshire, Wordsworth Editions Westlake, S. (Ed) (2014) Our work here is done Visions of a robot economy. London: Nesta

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Inspiring New Engineers

Amanda Britton Twynham School

I am told engineering firms are crying out for engineers. A study, by the Royal Academy of engineering, reports the UK needs to increase by as much as 50% the number of science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem) graduates it is creating. Two years ago Osborne’s plan for economic growth included the mantra “Made in Britain, Created in Britain, Designed in Britain, and Invented in Britain’. So why does the government question the place of design and technology in the curriculum? Uncertainty of engineering can perhaps cause teachers to shy away from its delivery. However with the recent upheavals of the curriculum, engineering could be one good reason for design and technology maintaining its place. As a teacher the dilemma is where to start and for some, understanding what engineering is. I am not an engineer, but for me engineering sits comfortably within design and technology as a branch of design that is concerned with buildings, and use of engines, machines, and structures. But what does it mean for my students? On asking my year 9 group the reoccurring answer was “someone who fixes things such as cars”. With this misconception in mind I began to look at ways engineering could be introduced to students in a way that was relevant and exciting to them.


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So where to start? I began to look for ‘pick up and run’ projects and came across a clip of Heathland School breaking a world record with a small rocket powered car inspired by the Bloodhound supersonic car. Bloodhound’s education team, aim to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers through their project to build a vehicle capable of achieving the first 1000 mph record on land in 2015. Bloodhound, unlike many engineering companies, regularly shares their progress through social media and national press. Using a current and real starting point, student interest was easily captured. The Bloodhound Project Showing my year 7 class two video clips one of Heathlands School and one of the Bloodhound SSC revealed their appetite for the possibilities of engineering. Their eyes widened, their jaws approached the floor and so the decision was made. The students set about a research task to discover the basic principles of aerodynamics. Armed with this information they were able to apply their finding to their design ideas. The group’s ability to take on board theoretical concepts such as drag and thrust and apply them to their product was brilliant. Designs, logos, branding and working drawings were all covered in graphics lessons. Students covered drawing to scale, orthographic

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views isometric views and produced good quality working drawings. Motivation to complete each task well was driven by the desire to race their cars. Working in groups the students supported each other at the different stages of manufacture producing an outcome that they were not only proud of but provided a wealth of learning experience. As the project developed I tweeted progress pictures and gained the interest of the Bloodhound SSC. The rocket cars were taking shape and all within the capability of my ‘resistant materials’ skills:


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simple Styrofoam construction. Although simple, the manufacturing process required accuracy and precision with close consideration of the design specification and working to the drawings students had produced. The launch and timing aspect of the project was something that needed support for which was provided through the Bloodhound ambassador program, and in our case David Hanon. David suggested a presentation to the year group followed by the group launching their rocket cars. 22 rocket cars and a box of fireworks and

240 students, what could go wrong!! David’s presentation included the Bloodhound story with a strong message about the engineering shortage. He ended with a video clip made by Rolls Royce that explains the demand of engineering in a presentation that students could relate to. If you take anything from this article watch the clip and show it to your students, as it clearly captures the diverse careers that design and technology can lead to and how meaningful and rewarding they can be. It’s a great clip.

During the presentation the students’ applauded each clip shown and were soon into the spirit of Bloodhound. With 22 cars lined up ready to go the air was filled with excitement. The launch of the cars was spectacular. The smell of sulphur drifted across the school; smoke billowing across the quad; all eyes were on technology. Cheers greeted each launch, and race area soon filled up with rocket cars, some of which launched into the air and others that did not fully survive the uneven surface of our racetrack. The Ambassadors reminded students that that in the real world of engineering car manufacturers sometimes discover a fault and have to recall thousands of cars at a massive cost and that testing of designs was a crucial part of the design process. Winners of the day were in visited to the Goodwood festival of speed to race their cars on a professional track and

see the replica Bloodhound car. Under the supportive eye of he Army’s Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME) the students competed against several schools across the country. Surrounded by inspirational vehicles and with their newfound appetite for engineering, competitiveness soon took hold with the chance to break their own speed record. Applying all they had learned 3rd place was secured with an impressive 67mph which students calculated with he help of Major Oli Morgan, missing out on 1st place by 4mph! Not bad for our first encounter with engineering. Working with Bloodhound has provided our students with an unforgettable introduction into the world of engineering. Memories made in the class room that inspire students to think differently and take on a challenge are sometimes lost

in the day to day project cycle. Taking a risk with an area such as engineering and responding to students’ interests can open up many opportunities. The project with my students evolved on a weekly basis as support grew from willing parties such as the bloodhound ambassadors. The project was responsive and even a little haphazard but students were excited about coming to lessons and working towards a final goal. For me, as their teacher ,the experience has wetted my appetite for engineering moving me out of my comfort zone, and opening my eyes to the wealth of support available to schools. So what’s next, how can we top rocket cars? Currently I do not know. However, now I have the support of the bloodhound ambassadors, REME and also the imagination of 22 inspired students to help decide where the journey will take us next.

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Design and Make the Future Teach Design

The Launch of a New Type of Event

The Ultimate Keynote

On the 10th of May 2014, Teach Design launched its first “Design and Make The Future” event, hosted and in partnership with The National STEM Centre in York. The sell out event opted for a new approach and bucked the trend of previous “conference” formats. Design and Make the Future encourages teachers, designers and engineers to share their knowledge and best practice through a series of handson workshops that engage the minds of teachers. In keeping with the Teach Design ethos, the event ran at cost price, at just £25 per delegate. Exhibitors were invited to setup and promote for free. This was an event run in the interests of the strong D&T teaching community.

To launch the event Mark Shayler opened as the days keynote speaker to a packed lecture theatre of 150 teachers, plus exhibitors and event staff. Mark works in the design industry where he is CEO of Greenape who specialises in the Circular Economy. We are delighted that Mark is a great friend and mentor of Teach Design too! Mark is one of the most engaging and inspiring speakers you could ever meet. He certainly lived up to the billing, delivering a heartfelt and comical talk about teaching design, with the message “design is a super power”. Mark highlighted the important role of teaching design to change the lives of young people and consequently the world around us. If ever a cohort of teachers would leave a room feeling on top of the world, this was that moment. A fantastic start to the day, top and tailed by Jim Smiths’ energetic introduction to the event ahead. The audience was enthused and what a perfect start it was!

A Personal Approach The day kicked off early for the Teach Design team at 6am, setting up the day alongside The National STEM Centre staff and other exhibitors from across the country. Upon arrival each delegate received a pack of materials and gifts to read through and enjoy, along with their own personal itinerary for the day. Each attendee choose prior to arrival up to four workshops from a choice of 18 running throughout the day. Taking such a personal approach was well received.

Workshops Driven by Technology Morning workshops on offer included; high tech electronics with Julie Boyd; a hands on look at iPad’s in the classroom with Ed Charlwood; the use of the Circular Economy approach in Product Design with Jim Smith; Practical Action exploring sustainable design; a Dyson disassembly workshop with Steve Parkinson; using the IsoSketch tool with Mark Wemyss-Holden

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from the Drawing Tool Company; modern food techniques with Angela Sachs & Marion Rutland and a very popular 3D printing workshop with Iain Major of 3D Systems. With some workshops at capacity it was clear what there was a thirst for in education and the presenters spoke highly of the engagement and interaction their audiences presented. The morning operated two rotations of separate 40 minute workshops and gave everyone a chance to really get hands-on with new technology as well as opportunities to network with other teachers from across the UK. Time to Reflect After a busy morning the atrium opened up for a buffet lunch, which was sponsored by Autodesk. Multitasking teachers were able to visit the exhibition hall which provided the base for Technology Supplies; Rapid Education; Kitronik; Boxford; Smart Wall Paint; Small Machines; Mindset; 3D Systems; VEX Robotics, Autodesk, Practical Action and CLEAPSS. The exhibition was an ideal way to share


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experiences and speak face to face with teachers looking to build on the workshops they had just attended. The lunch was extended giving everyone time to relax and network, but driving robots or scribbling on the Smart Wall were never too far away! Workshops for the Future The afternoon workshops carried on strong from the morning, including ENTO and their edible insects for designing food products; Chris Calver from Rapid Education giving a hands-on experience of using VEXIQ, Tom Milner and Phil Holton providing a look at sketching and rendering techniques; Jim Smith providing teachers with a snapshot of the new “Design Toolkit” for D&T Teachers; Ed Charlwood returning this time with Makey Makey boards and his invention ideas; a look through the huge Autodesk portfolio with Matthew Bell and finally Health and Safety advice from our partners CLEAPSS. Across the 8 workshops there was something for everyone to get stuck in to, and by the end of the day, all delegates had attended 4 workshops of their choice, that we hope will give them something of value to use in

their classroom straight away. Why Not? To round off the day, Keith Warren gave a heart resounding end keynote on the approaches he took in life to get to where he is with the phrase “Why not”. Keith is a leading motivational speaker in education, which was very evident throughout the duration of his excellent speech! His real “good feeling” talk give the day the wind down it needed before finally Jim Smith thanked everyone! An Annual Event Next year will see the Design & Make The Future event double in attendance, double in workshops and double in exhibitors. The only thing that won’t increase is the price, we promise! Design and Make the Future 2015 will be on 16th May 2015 next year. Tickets will become available in September 2014 so make sure you are quick! For all information regarding Design and make the Future, including attendance and exhibiting then please contact Jim Smith []

< Delegates enjoy a networking opportuity

> Mark Shayler and Design is a Superpower ^ The D&T Smartwall Makey Makey Inventions v

^ Jim Smith opens up the event

< Delegates make their way to the workshops

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Small Machines Giles Grover Small Machines

Overview Small Machines started out as Hydraulics4Kids in September 2013 at a weekend Craft/Maker Fair hosted by Sheffield’s Kelham Island Industrial Museum. Small Machines started out in September 2013 at the ‘Down by the Riverside’ weekend at Sheffield’s Kelham Island Industrial Museum, a Craft/Maker Fair. At that time the products were known as ‘Hydraulics4Kids’ and they were really well received by the public from the first instance. The Beginining Small Machines came about as an idea I had to extend the learning and knowledge of a handful of my Key Stage 3 students who wanted to attend an afterschool enrichment class. Using hydraulics as a means of moving objects has always been an area worth developing but rarely given time to deliver within the existing curriculum setup. Through the afterschool club I was able to refine, develop and add to the range of products. It was an ideal platform to introduce more complex aspects of machinery and given the relative simplicity of the project kits I could build in a large amount of learning-by-doing


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for the students, something that they really enjoyed. Once a few of the finished machines had gone home and parental feedback was coming back as really positive I decided to have a go at packaging them up to be sold to the general public, which was easier said than done. In fact, the whole process gave me a real insight into the more theoretical aspects of Product Design which I teach at GCSE. How they work Each Small Machine project kit is driven by one or two pairs of syringes working as hydraulic rams. Each pair is joined with a length of food grade plastic tubing. One syringe and the tube is filled with tap water and purged of any air bubbles. The second syringe is attached with the plunger fully inserted into the syringe body. This creates a closed circuit free from any air. Now the syringes will work in unison so when one is pushed into the syringe body the other will extend out. Because water will not compress this system creates a very effective transfer of motion. Mixing a little food dye into the water makes it easier for people to see how the liquid moves from one syringe to the other. All the parts in the kits either slot together

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or are held in place with short sections of tubing that friction-fit onto pre-cut lengths of dowel. The project kits are all based around existing mechanisms, predominantly using levers and linkages. However, the latest model uses Ratchets and Pawls to drive wheels and is the first mobile machine to be produced. â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Innovative Fun for Enquiring Mindsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; is the strapline for all of the kits. I chose that because it sums up the key elements that anyone experiences when they assemble any of the kits. Even the simplest one to assemble will most likely give the user a first-time experience in driving a machine through hydraulic power. I have also kept the instructions intentionally loose so that problem-solving is a necessary part of the assembly. You have to be engaged with the activity if you want it to succeed. Education Small Machines project kits are not exclusively for use by school age children.

At least a third of all sales so far have been to adults of all ages and backgrounds. With this level of interest from adults I am working on a range of project kits that require a more delicate touch. They will make use of more advanced construction methods as well as more variety in the component parts. In particular, the use of Living Hinges as functional elements within the design is something I am really keen to see developed and included as a regular feature. Using hydraulic forces to create movement and motion is distinctly different to electrical systems. It is smoother, quieter, and cheaper. It has a significantly smaller environmental footprint; fault finding is much easier and less fiddly. In many ways it appears to be low-tech but is in fact the first step towards a very demanding avenue of engineering. It is an ideal platform for teaching about Levers, Mechanical Advantage, Ratio and Volume. All the Medite components are laser cut which also allows the areas of QC and QA to be addressed as well as scales of production.

Curriculum Opportunities There are 2 fundamental aspects that underpin this business and will remain as definitions of Small Machines. First, all the project kits are to be enjoyed and used to extend knowledge and understanding. Second, all commercial sales will supplement the costs for educational sales. I would love to see these products adopted by STEM groups, lunchtime clubs, A level students looking for a springboard into a new avenue or Undergraduate Trainee Teachers looking for a resource that they can develop as part of their portfolio or as a new project on their Teaching Placement. Small Machine project kits that are sold to education or educators will be 30%50% of the commercial prices. Anyone interested can contact me directly at or visit the website and visit the online store.

Departmental Showcase Helen Dunn

Design & Technology @MrsD_Helen

Introduction Design and Technology is an amazing subject which covers a broad range of skills in a modern, ever changing environment. After all technology is ever-changing and the syllabus, the method we teach and the materials we use should be too. It should reflect what is being used in the workplace, be exciting for the learner and enable them to progress and achieve. Students should develop transferable learning skills which they can use throughout their education enabling them to develop into independent, creative thinkers.

New Look KS3 Within Design and Technology we acknowledge the importance of our students developing practically and academically and have therefore designed projects to enhance and develop these elements to their full potential. At key stage three students study a wide range of technology subjects through project based learning. A carousel system allows students to spend time with multiple subject areas and develop their core skills.

the beginning and end of the academic year by completing a series of tasks relating to the carousel subjects. This method ensures progress is accurately measured and if needs be intervention plans can be put into place. Students complete projects within work booklets which are designed and laid out in a GCSE style, with branding and layouts universal throughout the department to ensure consistency. Work is marked and graded using KS3 grades (GCSE) which are a change from traditional levels. Response to these changes has been exceptionally positive from our learners; with more being able to confidently state the level that they are working at and more importantly how they can improve.

The projects that are delivered reflect those offered at key stage four, allowing for a smoother transition of knowledge and skills. Projects are broken down into five success criteria areas and this is where progress is measured using our new grading Take away homework has also been system. designed and used within the department using a Nandos style menu. Each subject In terms of product design projects are area with DT contributes difficulty DT at David Young is part of a wider faculty created with students in mind and are questions referring to the spice levels. and this creates a strong and close bond regularly changed to reflect interests and Students have found this to be a refreshing which enables staff to teach and contribute modern technologies. Feedback is vital change and enjoy the chance to pick their in other areas. The department is largely and students are asked their opinions on own task. open plan and this allows students the lessons and projects. flexibility to move within lessons, especially Compulsory enrichment activities also when completing practical based tasks. Examples of KS3 projects include Tatty enable students to study and develop their The department has also expanded into Devine inspired jewellery using both acrylic skills further with the department offering an additional building which is located off and pewter, mobile phone cases using a diverse range from work shop skills, site and enables students to study product vacuum formed moulds, art movement STEM activities and DT ICT, with the latter design, resistant materials and engineering inspired acrylic clocks and re-creating being the product design route. Students using a wide variety of tools and equipment Banksy work using both stencils and study and complete a variety of tasks using on a larger scale. Photoshop. Students are assessed at both Corel Draw, Google Sketch Up and Solid

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Works. All three packages are essential for producing high quality CAD graphics, needed for their KS4 coursework. KS4 At KS4 product design students complete a series of mini controlled assessment projects as well as skills building workshops. These projects have been planned and mapped out specifically so that they are best equipped for completing their controlled assessment to the highest standard. Whether it is designing concepts for an ergonomic games controller, producing a scaled model of a design classic, generating and manufacturing ideas for a flat pack light shade or developing CAD confidence it is all covered in the initial skills building period. Work is assessed using the exam board criteria and graded regularly using colour coded trackers which are shared with students. The terminology in particular is shared and broken down within assessment booklets which are used by all students within lessons. These are used during teacher mentor meetings where individual progress is discussed and targets are set. In terms of the controlled assessment students have over the years successfully designed and manufactured self-assembly lighting in the style of IKEA using a variety of materials and manufacturing methods. Final products are individually sealed, boxed and labelled with instructions to a professional standard. Coursework is produced as an electronic portfolio and students are encouraged to generate work which is impeccable in terms of presentation. KS5 In the past the department has offered the AQA route in product design. AS, students have completed a series of mini projects ranging from pewter casted jewellery to Alessi inspired products. At A2 students are given a wider brief and enjoy the freedom of designing and making products of their choice. This is where their personality, flair and creativity can really shine. In previous years our most creative products have come from generating space saving products. Whether it is Tetris themed


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furniture, foldable chaise long seats, book case encased chairs or baby high chairs the students have stretched their own design capabilities and manufacture high end products. The department has moved into offering IB (International Baccalaureate) DT as the KS5 option. Students study a two year course which enables them to develop a sense of curiosity as they acquire the skills necessary for independent and lifelong learning and action through inquiry into the technological world around them. The course allows students to develop their own thinking skills, both critically and creatively in order to identify and resolve complex problems. Through study of the topics students develop a greater knowledge and understanding of the subject and are able to put that knowledge into best practice in order to complete internal assessment based coursework and a personalised project. The Future The future of DT is bright and it is an exciting time for the subject within the curriculum. A programme of study at key stage 1 & 2 will enable and ensure that students join secondary school with some form of DT knowledge. This is currently an area that is lacking or, worse, completely non-existent. Teaching staff within the department have already been involved in the form of hosting primary school days and delivering lessons across key stages to primary schools which are linked to the Academy through the LEAF trust. Future plans are to host CPD events on how to teach DT effectively, provide mentor support, guidance and oversee planning of schemes of work. Social Networking Many staff within the department use Twitter, DT Facebook discussion groups and Dropbox as a method of networking and showcasing best practice. These have been great tools in terms of department promotion, CPD, generating new projects and developing methods of delivery. Similar to students, as staff we are all learning and where better than from fellow DT professionals! It was Twitter which introduced the department to a website

builder called Weebly which enables users to create websites which could be accessed on all platforms. As a department we considered the possible benefits of online learning and how we could modernise the way students learn, especially at exam time. Using Weebly a GCSE product design revision website was created and shared with students. QR codes and a promotional drive around the school created a buzz and soon students were scanning and using the site in lessons and on their smart phones and tablets. The resource didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t replace the traditional methods of revision but gave it a modern spin. The site was shared on Twitter and Facebook discussion groups and received encouraging feedback from both teachers and students and since Easter has received over 10,000 visitors. The success of the revision website has grown into a controlled assessment website which broke down all the elements of the product design course linked to the design process with detailed explanations, graded examples and AQA supporting marking criteria. The site was designed to be as student friendly as possible with an easily accessible tool bar to navigate around the site. It has been successfully used for teaching and delivery with our GCSE cohort and has been warmly received by students and staff. It wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be until results day in August that we can fully review whether it was a success or not but early indications would suggest online learning platforms are a successful addition to our curriculum delivery. Future developments are to expand this to other subject areas and key stages to support learning (both in and out of lessons), set homework, promote work and share best practice.

< Take away Homework

< Faculty wide branding

> AS Product Design work

Students reasearch using deptment laptops v ^ Collaboration events with Leeds East SILC


David Young Community Academy Design & Technology Department < Points rewarded for level of homwork completed

> Online Controlled Assessment

v A2 Product Design work < Inhouse artwork

< â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Nandosâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; style take away homework

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You’ve got to be in it to win it! Julie Boyd

Textiles Consultant

During my 25 years as a teacher I worked with a number of students who entered local and national competitions linked to D&T. Some were very successful and it’s motivating for a student to get an acknowledgement of their hard work, even if they aren’t an overall winner. As a teacher you also get a buzz from your student’s success, particularly as the repercussions in the classroom can be significant. I have seen the competitive element of a competition spark a real enthusiasm in students that has lasted well beyond the end of the competition itself. Now I work as a D&T consultant I am keen to run competitions for both young people and teachers. My aim is for them to be both accessible and with prizes that are relevant and aspirational. Before Christmas I ran my first competition, aimed at 13 - 16 years old, who had to produce a textiles postcard with the theme of celebration’. The prize was a fabulous H Class 100 sewing machine worth £300 sponsored by Husqvarna Sewing Machines and Coles Sewing Centre in Nottingham. An aim of the competition was to provide teachers with a low cost project they could use with years 9, 10 or 11. It was intended to be flexible so it could be used as a short or longer project, whether it be at KS3 module, or as a revision activity for GCSE. Some schools used the competition as a whole class project, whilst others set it as optional practical work homework.


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Others ran it as part of an after school club for targeted groups, such as gifted and talented students. The competition also aimed to encourage students to focus on quality and technical skills along with creativity. In particular students were asked to consider carefully how they used the celebration theme. The prompt for this was based on working with GCSE students as they generated and developed ideas for their Controlled Assessment. Many interpret the exam board briefs literally rather than seeing them as spring board for ideas. The same issue also arises for the AQA exam paper each year where students are given a context to design around, with many losing marks because of their literal and uninspiring interpretations. A major aim of the competition therefore was to try and address this. Caitlin Obee, aged 13, from Thorpe St. Andrew School in Norwich, won the competition impressing judges with the level of detail and accuracy of her work, as well as with her unusual interpretation of the theme. In particular Caitlin used sweet wrappers stitched to the fabric surface to decorate the postcard and give it a unique feel. The standard of entries was so high that judges selected 3 runners up, along with 7 commendations, all of which received small prizes. These were chosen based on

Caitlin Obeeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s winning entry <

> Presentation of the machine showing (from right to left) Jan Wright (Sales Educator from Viking Sewing Machines), Julie Boyd (Textiles Consultant), Caitlin Obee (winner) teach design

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either the quality of their finished work or their creative interpretation of the theme. A school prize was also awarded to Gemma Gonzalez from William Howard School in Cumbria as her students entered a large number of entries that were of a consistently good standard. Since the competition I have had some very touching emails from students saying how much they enjoyed the competition and how it has motivated and inspired them. It was a real pleasure receiving and judging entries and there will definitely be more competitions in the future. These

will be for both students and teachers and won’t all focus on textiles but will go across other D&T areas. See the competition entries at Keep an eye out for my next competition which is aimed at teachers. The prize is a copy of The Design Student’s Handbook by Jane Bartholomew and Steve Rutherford. Find out more about the competition at

Machines and Coles Sewing Centre in Nottingham for their support for the competition & Take a look at the courses I run for D&T teachers at along with a range of free resources. I also produce a free weekly D&T newsletter, email me at to be added to the mailing list.

A big thank you to Husqvarna Sewing

< 3 runners up - Caitlin Cross from Broughton Business and Enterprise College in Preston, Jessica Lloyd from Wolverhampton Girls’ School, and Louisa Bowman from William Howard School in Cumbria.

> 7 commendations - Ebony Telford, Rebecca Robinson, Abi Marston, Imogen Davies, all from William Howard School, Cumbria, Amelia Tyler from South Hunsley School in North Ferriby, Nicola Yates from The Wavell School in Farnborough, and Emily Ann Wells from Bitterne Park School in Southampton.


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London STEM Leaders The LAUNCH! Jon Taylor

London Coordinator Teach Design

On Monday 23rd June, 20 excited teachers descended upon the Highgate School Design, Technology and Engineering Department for the launch of the London STEM Leaders programme. Steve (Teach Design Co-Founder) kicked off with an introduction to the programme and what it is all about. Jon Taylor & Andy Thomson then gave a hands-on introduction to the VEX IQ robotics platform. “Packaging wars” soon commenced as the STEM Leaders launched themselves into building their first robot. Everyone had a smile on the face (in between spells of deep concentration as they mastered the art of VEX IQ). The room was bustling with enthusiasm and excitement. Bit by bit robots were taking shape with the phrase “it’s easier than it looks” echoing around the room. By lunchtime all robots were built and it was time to switch our attention towards programming, which caused some anxiousness amongst the group. Comments such as “I have no idea about programming” and “that’s going to be far too complicated for me” could be heard as a few nervous faces entered the room. Jon & Andy explained the basics of Modkit and took the STEM leaders through a series of tutorials designed to demonstrate the ease and simplicity of computer programming. Within minutes robots were driving around and autonomously operating by themselves and the nervousness disappeared. One teacher commented “that’s really easy to use”, and another

“it’s not actually that bad, I didn’t realise programming could be so accessible”. Overall it was a fantastic day and it was great to see so many teachers enthused by robotics and programming. The quote of the day had to be “The kids are going to love this!” There will now be a series of one-toone support and other twilight training opportunities to take the teachers from beginner to advanced. The teachers will now take the VEX IQ kits back into their schools and create a STEM club focused on robotics and programming. In January, all 20 London schools will compete against each other in the VEX Highrise competition which could then qualifiy them for the National finals in Birmingham later in the year. The London STEM Leaders programme is run by Teach Design and funded through the London Schools Excellence Fund. teach Design, in partnership with the Greater London Authority and the Department for Education are aiming to improve the quality of STEM delivery in London. For more information about our London STEM Leaders programme, please visit or follow @lsleaders on Twitter.

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Autodesk advert 1page

Ideas brought to life. Autodeskâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Design the Future program offers FREE Autodesk software and resources to all UK Secondary Schools to support design and technology subjects.


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Helping dreams take shape Our 3D machines help Alex from Penwortham Priory Academy achieve his creative ambitions â&#x20AC;&#x201C; turning good ideas on paper into reality. If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d like to talk to us about shaping the future of your students, please call +44 (0)1422 324810 or visit

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Teach Design Magazine Issue 3  

The FREE magazine for Design, Technology & Engineering Education

Teach Design Magazine Issue 3  

The FREE magazine for Design, Technology & Engineering Education


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