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Vocational Skills

Aspects within this curriculum outline that are marked in Italics are taken from the National curriculum in England for Key Stages 1,2 and 3.

Rationale for this curriculum

The Vocational Skills Curriculum in Combe Pafford School is designed to reflect the high aspirations that we hold for all our pupils by promoting ongoing pupil progress and by providing effective scaffolding of skills to support the pupils' journeys into the world of work.

Vocational Skills supports the Design and Technology National Curriculum by being an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. Using creativity and imagination. Within work projects that are planned at levels that pupils can access, individuals will be encouraged and supported to design and make items that are practical in a variety of contexts, considering their requirements the unit of work being followed.

Pupils will acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on disciplines such as mathematics, science, engineering and art. Pupils will be supported in learning how to take risks, which will increase their own self-esteem and self-belief. This will in turn, support pupils in becoming resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable citizens and increase their opportunities into the world of work.

Through the evaluation of past and present design and technology in the world around us, pupils will develop an understanding of how Design and Technology impacts on daily life and the wider world. This High-quality Vocational Skills Curriculum makes an essential contribution to the ability of our pupils to gain valuable employment and in turn support the well-being of the nation.

The Intentions of this Curriculum (Intent):

  • To develop the creative, technical and practical skills needed to perform everyday tasks.
  • To evaluate and test their ideas and products within specified parameters.
  • Teach skills and knowledge associated with the use of tools and their application in a range of job areas.
  • To teach pupils the importance of health and safety and how the same rules apply across all work areas.
  • To raise pupil awareness of the benefits of having a job.
  • To inform pupils about a range of trades and jobs such as: Construction worker, retail worker, childcare assistant, MV worker, animal care assistant, hairdressing assistant, hospitality and catering worker and horticulture worker.
  • To integrate maths and careers in context.
  • To raise the profile of the option choices available to pupils, allowing them to make informed choices at the end of yr9.

Our Curriculum Delivery (Implementation):

This curriculum will be delivered using tailored tasks specific to different job areas and planned at a level that our pupils can access. Pupils will have opportunities to experience a range of different job skills through practical tasks and discussion activities that will support their knowledge for the future. Health and Safety skills and knowledge will run through each lesson and pupils will be encouraged to think independently when choosing tools and equipment. Pupils will be taught essential transferable skills such as perseverance, listening skills, politeness, teamwork and a willingness to complete a job well.

Rather than employing regular written work tasks, this subject is based on essential practical activities as more achievement and progress can be gained by 'doing' a task at an appropriate level. Pupil progress will be recorded with live assessment documents, photographs and video of working practices in relation to each unit outcomes. Differentiated planning and specific Interventions will be developed to help pupils who are finding access difficult or, who are moving through units quicker than their peers. Where appropriate, pupils will work in a range of relevant contexts, which could include, the home, school, leisure, culture, enterprise, industry and the wider environment. At a level appropriate to our pupils, they should be taught to:

  • Design purposeful, functional, appealing products for themselves and other users based on design criteria.
  • Generate, develop, model and communicate their ideas through talking, drawing, templates, mock-ups and, where appropriate, information and communication technology.
  • Select from and use a range of specialist tools, techniques, processes, equipment and machinery to perform practical tasks for example, cutting, shaping, joining and finishing.
  • Select from and use a wide range of materials and components, including a range of construction materials, cardboard, papers and textiles according to their characteristics.
  • Evaluate their ideas and products against the unit design criteria and consider the views of others to improve their work.
  • Build structures, exploring how they can be made stronger, stiffer and more stable.
  • Discuss, describe or understand developments in design and technology, its impact on individuals, society and the environment, and the responsibilities of designers, engineers and technologists

Benefits to Pupils (Impact):

By the end of key stage 3, pupils are expected to know, apply and understand the matters, skills and processes specified in the program of study.

  1. Pupils will learn how to use tools safely.
  2. Pupils will have knowledge and be able to put into practice rules on health and safety.
  3. Pupils will be able to explain why having a job is important.
  4. Pupils will have an increased knowledge of a range of jobs and careers different industries.
  5. Pupils will have a better understanding of why maths is important in the context of work.
  6. Pupils will make informed choices for their option subjects at the end of yr9.

Whatever adaptations or additions are made within this curriculum we will always have high aspirations for all of our pupils by supporting their continued progress and their journeys into the world of work.

Last updated: 13th March 2024