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Liam Fitzgerald E-Portfolio

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L Fitzgerald

on 8 July 2014

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Transcript of Liam Fitzgerald E-Portfolio

Welcome to my e-Portfolio! Here you will find a collection of images, thoughts, projects and other miscellaneous items relevant to my development as a Design & Technology Teacher.

Before entering teaching, I had always had a heavy interest in creating and making. This lead to me studying Architectural Technology at Sheffield Hallam University, where I achieved a Lower Second Class Honours Degree. However, while I loved the designing side of the profession, I didn't enjoy the business side, and this turned me away from the subject. After a year of deliberation, I decided that the teaching profession was my true calling. And it has been a decision I have not regretted since.

I have always thought my best tool in getting learners engaged is by looking at what engaged me as a student. From this, I realised that what interested me most in school was the love of creating and making. This is what I want to pass on to students within a classroom. It is my aim to do this in a variety of ways, and I plan on continuously developing my skills as both a maker and a teacher to ensure that my teaching is relevant to the modern day learner. This presentation will highlight this development and will show my exploration throughout the subject that is Design & Technology.
Previous Degree Work
Degree Work
Plans, Elevations & Sections
Previous Degree Work
Environmental Aspects
Previous Degree Work
Technical Details
Previous Degree Work
Previous Degree Work
Final Presentation Boards
Exemplar Work
Electronic Door Alarm
As part of a Subject Knowledge Enhancement module for my PGCE Course, I was to complete a project where I create a Child’s Door Alarm. This was intended as an Electronic’s Project, to help develop skills within this area.
This project was hugely beneficial for me, and in developing my skills within the field of Electronics. This module saw me go through the entire process of creating an Electronic product, from the traditional design stages through to the Electronic sections of designing a circuit, creating a program and then printing it out and manufacturing a physical circuit board. The software used in order to create this was Circuit Wizard, and this was used to create everything from the Physical Circuit Diagram to the Flowchart that will be downloaded on the PIC Chip. All these skills have been gained, and I now feel confident in recreating any of these elements in order to create an Electronic Project of my own.
My response to the brief was to use something that kids would deem relevant as a basis. I saw a growing trend in Superheroes becoming popular through cartoon series and films. I then created a series of designs based upon this. One I was stuck on was a Batman symbol which reads “KEEP OUT”. I drew this shape on 2D Design Tools and then used to laser cutter to get a series of 3mm Acrylic shapes, attached together using Dichloromethane. I then attached the fully made circuit board, with all the components attached inside, once the program has been downloaded onto the PIC Chip, and the process was complete.
There was 2 On/Off Switches for this. The first was a master switch, as a Toggle Switch. This was placed in to conserve battery life where required. The main switch to be used was disguised by the White “Bat-Man” face. Pushing this released a trigger and displayed the sights and sounds for the alarm.
To follow up from the previous post, here is a video showing how the Door Alarm works. For those keen Superhero fans, the addition of the Superman Theme Tune to a Batman Night Light was deliberate. This was because the Batman theme was impossible to obtain, and so rather than settle for a poor Superman design, I decided to merge the 2 heroes together!
Exemplar Work
De Stijl Inspired Clock
Exemplar Work
Mechanical "Wacky Racer" Scheme of Work
Exemplar Work
Miscellaneous KS3 Projects
Exemplar Work
These 4 images show the construction process that I planned for certain aspects of my building. I have always been extremely interested in how connections are made during the manufacturing & construction process.

The top images show the connections between the Glue-Laminated (GLULAM) Beams, which shall hold the roof up. Because of the complicated nature of all these beams connecting up together, it required bespoke steel joists being made. These will slot into a break within the Glulam Timber. A bolt will be made through the timber and joist and will be bolted at each side.

The same can be said for the column and beam connection seen in the lower two images, which follow the same idea, while also looking to be hidden out of sight.
These are computer generated renders constructed using an add-on program to Google Sketch-Up called V-Ray. This has allowed me to have photo-realistic images of my model.

Fig. 1 & 2 show the model from an internal perspective. Fig. 1 shows a space designed for relaxation activities and I feel this has been show effectively by the calming light entering the room. Fig. 2 shows the Kitchen Space. It displayed the high windows used for ventilation and light purposes.

Fig. 3 & 4 show the external area of the building. These are extremely useful as they display materiality that was not clear before the computer generated rendering. They display my green roof, lime rendered walls and the glue laminated timber frame surrounding the building.
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
These are the final plan and elevation drawings the Cancer Caring Centre project. As seen from the plan, the main entrance is from the back of the building, so the user could feel comforted knowing they have seen the entirety of the building while walking towards it. The building featured the kitchen as a central space and acts as a buffer zone for all the different classes. Offices are also just off the entrance so carers can immediately see people entering the building. On the lower level, break-out spaces are provided for small group chats. The larger activity room allows much larger discussion or yoga classes.
The plans and elevations were completed on AutoCAD as where many of the 3D images that were generated for the final submission. These images have then had slight alterations on Adobe Photoshop, which is another program I am very comfortable using.
Elevation 1
Elevation 2
Environmental Issues always play a huge part in any of my designs. This interest initially started at University, during a lecture which informed me that building use contributes to 50% of all Carbon Dioxide Emissions, and that the Construction Cycle contributes another 7%. I now believe that it is of the utmost importance that my designs are as environmentally friendly as possible, to try and lessen the damage that buildings cause.
In my Design Project in final year, I believe that I have achieved this due to a number of factors. Firstly, I had the construction be made out of Straw Bale Walls. The benefits of this are that it requires little machinery to construct and it's a completely natural material. Straw Bale walls are also known to soak up the heat of a building during the day, and release it when it is much cooler, keeping the building temperature regulated through the day.
Another environmentally friendly aspect of the building is an Extensive Green Roof, to reduce rain-water runoff due to the building being built on a slope. This also is to replace the green space removed to accommodate the building.
As seen above, I also studied daylight levels within a room of my building. This was to see how much daylight would be entering my building. It is from these studies that I realised that my room would be far too bright, and thus the design changed slightly to remove this negative effect.
As part of my Final Year, I had to design a "Maggie's Centre", which is a series of Cancer Caring Centres, established by Landscape Architect - Charles Jencks named after his late wife - Maggie. These Maggie's Centre's have been designed by numerous noteworthy architects such as Richard Rogers and Zaha Hadid. These buildings provide a refuge to many cancer sufferers and so need to be treated with great sensitivity.
As part of my own personal development, while on Placement 2, I decided to create a De Stijl Clock, based upon a project that I had seen within the school. I feel that these clocks have numerous advantages which will benefit learners as they head towards their GCSE Projects. They teach learners about a design movement, which they may be tested upon within their exam. They also get learners familiar with using software such as CorelDraw, and in using the Laser Cutters, which will benefit them towards their controlled assessment.
However, I also saw numerous room for improvement within these clock designs. For example, these Clocks became wall-hangings but didn't hang particularly well, and there was concerns that the clock didn't function well as an actual product. Therefore, I added slips of plywood to the base on either side to support it. This plywood was sanded and sealed to get a quality finish, which adds another process to be learnt, and meant that the product functioned better, as a desk clock.
There are numerous problems I encountered with this particular design. The windows, of the Roman Colosseum inspired design, fail to cover up the Battery Pack on the underside. Providing a template shape, for the hole (where the hands can be attached) will mean that any learner completing this project will not make the same mistake. And it will help them think about the 3D finished product and not just the design. Also, the second hand is too long and gets stuck at this base. This can be easily trimmed down, but if this was also added to a template it would ensure that this same mistake is not made again.
As part of a Teaching & Learning Assignment, I was required to recreate an improve upon a Design and Make Assignment.for Key Stage 3. The following page shall walk you through the entirety of this scheme of work, and all of the appropriate booklets.
The Scheme of Work that I chose to improve upon was a Year 8 Resistant Materials Project, based upon a Mechanical Crocodile. The project itself was successful in many aspects, such as the learning objectives and the skills and knowledge gained by the Learners. However, discussions with Learners participating within the project brought up ideas for improvement, and it is from this, that the Scheme of Work was developed.
Initially, I found the main problem with the original project was that it lacked variety. Everyone came up with the exact same outcome. This disappointed me, as I believe the best thing about Design & Technology is the Design Element. My proposed outcome saw the same basic skills being learnt, but added an element to it as well.

My Proposed Idea was for a Mechanical "Wacky Racer". This would teach Learners about materiality of woods, rotation and different types of cams and motion. However, in addition, Learners will also be able to design their own work, as opposed to the prescriptive nature of the previous task. The idea of making a "Wacky Racer" (based upon the Wacky Racers cartoon) will hook learners into the project, through the use of short clips of the original cartoon. This will also show that the possibilities are endless, and they needn't look at cars for inspiration. They will be able to draw influences from other elements. This will increase creativity.

Another problem I saw with the original Scheme of Work was that it lacked differentiation. I wished to rectify this. The main problem with differentiation within Design & Technology is the difference in skills within Practical task and the Written Evaluations and Research. Therefore, I decided to differentiate twice within the Scheme. This would give the benefit of meaning all Learners got a tailor made experience within a Resistant Materials classroom. To highlight this differentiation, a variety of different workbooks were created to aid with the learning. These are featured below...
Practical Booklet - HATS
Practical Booklet - MATS
Practical Booklets - LATS
Literacy Booklet - HATS
Literacy Booklet - MATS
Literacy Booklets - LATS
Literacy Booklet - LATS
Click Here To Skip These Booklets
Click on the Booklet you wish to view.
Literacy Booklet - HATS
Literacy Booklet - MATS
Practical Booklet - LATS
Practical Booklet - MATS
Practical Booklet - HATS
The following slide shows a collection of different projects that have been completed by myself throughout my teaching.
This project was entitled “Gift in the Box”. This is a Year 7 Project where learners make a box, which is 4 pieces of plywood glued together with PVA Glue, and then held in a vice. A sheet of aeroply is then applied to the top and bottom of the box, again attached with PVA glue, and held in a vice. One all these edges have been sanded so they are all flat, learners cut through their box using a Miniature Band Saw or a Hegner Saw. One side will be painted, while the other is sanded and then a layer of sealant applied to provide a quality finish. The emphasis of this is to ensure a quality finish, which will aid them throughout future project.

The Gift differs depending on the teaching, with some teachers making a Maze Game, while others make a Pewter Casting, and others Vacuum Form HIPS to make a Chocolate Mould. I decided to make the Maze Game, as it provided a high quality finish, while teaching very important skills such as how to use 2D Design Tools and the CNC Router.
Another project was called “Clearly Different”, which is a Year 8 CAD/CAM Project. Learners design a Phone Holder on CorelDraw, by tracing over a cartoon image and then morphing the image so it creates a Phone Holder shape. This forces learners to think about the entire product, which again adds more skills that will be required for them at GCSE Level.

Once they have drawn the Phone Holder on CorelDraw, it is then cut out using a Laser Cutter so learners will learn which items need to be a particular colour to cut or score out. This will be their first introduction to the laser cutter, which will be a big part of their future DT work at GCSE level. They will cut these designs out onto 3mm Clear Acrylic, which will be bent using a Line Bender so it holds the shape. This teaches learners another process they can use later in their school life.
This project is a Year 9 Making Project. This is the first year where learners participate within their GCSE in Product Design: 3D Products. With the other project being the De Stijl Clock, a 2nd Project, focusing on making skills was needed, and so this Pull Along Toy was required. This was made using Pine Softwood, and will be using most manual techniques, teaching learners about the different types of wood joints such as Half Lap Joint. This adds theory which again, has additional benefits later on. Learners gain skills in using Chisels and Tenon Saws in using this project. Once it is cut out, and put together, it is sanded and sealed to get a quality finish.

Additional Benefits as it also gave learners the opportunity to learn about technical drawings. In this project, Learners refreshed their knowledge in 2D Design Tools by drawing their design Isometrically using this program. This gives them skills within dimensioning also, which will aid them in communicating their ideas within their portfolio.
AS Level - Product Design
Year 9 - Built Environment Project
Teaching Strategies
Year 10 - Architectural Project
Dining Hall Redevelopment
Year 7 - I-Learning
Year 7 - ICT
Examples of Year 8 Outcomes & Marking
Clearly Different - Acrylic Phone Holder
Examples of Year 7 Outcomes and Marking
Gift in the Box & Electronic Badge
Skills Gained
Teaching & Skills Gained
Throughout my degree and my brief teaching experience, I have gained a wealth of skills which will benefit me throughout my time teaching. The skills I have gained benefit me in a number of situations. For example, the various skills within Computer Programs will help me with any presentations or data monitoring. Meanwhile, my Practical Skills can help create and teach a variety of different projects for learners of all age groups.
The Computer Skills that I have gained include;
Microsoft Office (including Word, PowerPoint, Excel & Publisher)
Adobe Photoshop
Adobe InDesign
TechSoft 2D Design
Trimble Sketch-Up
V-Ray (Photo Realistic Add-On for Sketch-Up)
The Practical Skills that I have gained include;
Line Bender
Laser Cutter
CNC Router
Band Saw
Belt Sander
Bobbing Sander
Pewter Casting
Sand Casting
Metal Lathe
Milling Machine
Wood Lathe
Tenon Saw
Coping Saw
Finger Sander
Pillar Drill
While on my 2nd Placement, I got the opportunity to teach an unique lesson called “I-Learning”. In this lesson, groups of Year 7 learners rotate around a series of subject areas with the emphasis on gaining a brand of skills that the school wanted all learners to have. These include
. Every lesson, Learners get given a new task, and are given 2 hours to complete it, and work within their team to come up with the best outcome.
The images to the right show some particular outcomes for a Football Pitch Pull-Out to be featured within a local newspaper to celebrate Bradford City's recent success. This task excited learners as it was relevant for what was on-going at that particular moment in time. Learners also enjoyed being creative, and asked for numerous different resources to get their ideas across. These were provided to them, where possible. This lesson was interesting as it showed the different ways in which learners work. Many enjoyed working in teams and discussing ideas, while others worked separately and took the best ideas from each. Others worked well through trial and error. However, all learners were excited to work within teams.
Another I-Learning Lesson saw learners attempt to create a toy rollercoaster, with the aim being that they had to keep the ride going the longest. Prizes were awarded for inventiveness and appearance. The ways that learners went about completing this task was interesting. Some learners decided that by making their design longer, would keep the marble traveling for longer, while others realised putting obstacles in the way can slow the marble down and increase the length that way. This lesson also saw numerous groups negotiating to make 1 larger rollercoaster, but in the end, they couldn't agree to terms!
During my 2nd Placement, I have had the opportunity to see the Year 7 Gift in the Box Project from start to finish. This has given me a great insight into how pupils learn and what engages them and what does not. This was especially apparent within this project given the variety of different tasks that took place within it. Some learners preferred the Resistant Materials side of the project, while others CAD/CAM side of the project.

This made a project like this very difficult to mark.
These are examples of 3 outcomes for the latest project that learners will be completing – the Electronic Badge. Here, learners gain skills drawing within CorelDraw to come up with a Badge Shape, working to given parameters (where the LEDs will need to pop through). Learners are currently completing this stage of the project, and shall be advancing further into the Electronics side of the project in the upcoming weeks.
One way of assessment and data driven planning that I have made great use of within placement is a Document known as a “Flight Path”. From these, we can see what progress learners need to make in order to make Four Levels of Progress before the end of GCSE Level. This is displayed within a line graph. On the same scale, there is a Bar Chart where Learners Progress is measured project by project. This can show if Learners are on target to make the required progress. This allows me to figure out who my High and Low Attainers should be, and who will need additional help to ensure that they make the progress they deserve.
This project is currently on going, and so there is no actual finish product or finished grades for this at the current moment in time. However, I believe that it is important that learners receive timely feedback on a constant basis in order for them to improve. This slide will show a collection of different pupil’s current work, alongside some of the feedback that they have received.
The feedback learners are given includes codes, which are used throughout the school. These include WWW (What Went Well), EBI (Even Better If) and MAP (My Action Plan). The first two of these are completed by the teacher, and then upon receiving this feedback (which is inserted within the E-Booklet that they must complete) they need to write the MAP themselves, and use it as a reference point in order to help them improve.
Throughout my 2nd Placement, I also got the opportunity to teach Year 7 ICT. This was to expand knowledge outside of my subjects, and since there was a space available, it was decided that given my qualifications within Computing, I would be a good fit within this class. So far, I have taught a module within Spreadsheets, and this has been a completely different experience from teaching Design & Technology. It is interesting to see how differently certain learners act from 1 subject to another.
The teaching technique I used for this subject differed from what I needed to use for Design & Technology. Primarily because, this was a more theory based than DT, and so needed a lot more projecting to the class and activities that can only last the duration of a lesson, but build upon those that came before it. The main difficulty in teaching this type of lesson is that learners found the topic to be very dry and uninteresting compared to Website and Leaflet Design that they had completed previous to this. Therefore, I needed to apply a teaching methodology which would engage learners.
To aid with this, I used a technique known as POWER TEACHING. This was a concept, developed from America, which was a Team-Based Activity. Learners will be placed in teams based upon ability and will be given a number. These numbers will place them against peers of the same level so directed questioning can be asked to a select few at a time. It also meant that stronger learners can support weaker learners and help them by explaining it in a way which as a teacher, I may not be making completely clear. This type of teaching taught me a lot about classroom management and it will help me massively as I continue my teaching career.
Whilst on my 2nd Placement, an opportunity arose for a class of Year 10 Pupils to be able to redesign the Cafeteria Area that is usually used at Lunch and Break Times. Seeing as I have an background within the Architectural field, I was given the task of leading these Year 10 Pupils within this project. I initially found this challenging as Year 10 Pupils have no experience within Architecture and such they had a lot of initial difficulties, which became an additional challenge to handle as a teacher.
However, I soon was able to get onto their level and create tasks which they could understand but provide great merit towards getting this project on the way. I did this through simple “drag & drop” space planning tasks, measuring areas with string to get the volume of a space, and numerous Design Specifications to help gauge what this space truly needs to be. The images above show this type of work in action.
Another experience gained throughout my PGCE year was teaching a Year 12 class Product Design, so they are ready for their AS Exam. Initially, I was instructed to go in and do a Quiz for 30 minutes, to gather a baseline for where learners were at. I made this as interactive as possible to hook these learners in. This was initially successful but they were not making the progress that they would need to for the exam. I then had an idea of creating a tournament seeing as it was a class of 8 boys. This was very successful and I eventually took the class on for full 2 Hour Lessons. I found they were remembering facts based upon experiences and the rivalry that was building between the group.
This taught me the importance of pitching my lesson to the wants of the group. While this worked with this particular group, I doubt it would have been successful with a different group. I now strive to find a way such as this to hook all learners into each lesson, and attempt to pitch it to their interests.
As part of my PGCE Course, I am required to complete an Active Research project about an area within Design & Technology Teaching which could require some improvement. My response to this was to look at introducing Architecture within the DT Curriculum, to change the stigma that DT is not a Academic Subject, but to also respond to different learners within the school who make a clear decision at an early age to be an Architect for a Career Path.
Following the Live Project with the group of Year 10 Pupils, I came up with the response to create an Architecture Based Scheme of Work. To aid teachers with a non-architectural background, it follows the pattern of Product Design projects. It also intends to follow the Product Design Scheme of Work.

The project is to create a Bike Shed, within the style of Zaha Hadid. The logic behind it being that the Bike Shed is a small enough project to handle, but at the same time Zaha Hadid will provide an engaging and interesting hook for the learners. The project will make use of the Costing of Materials and will ensure that learners are working to scale, and are developing numerous designing skills such as Isometric Drawing and Plan Drawing.
I made the decision that given the nature of the task, no learner will be able to achieve higher than a 4A. This was because there was no complex elements in the task that could result in a Level 5 piece of work. To mark these, they were ordered from best to worse, and then the Highest & Lowest were double checked before being ordered up.
Imaan - 4B
Bethany - 4A
Mustafa - 4C
Placement Schools
Placement School A
Placement School B
My first placement was at Castleford Academy, located in the town of Castleford, West Yorkshire. Within the Design & Technology department, they offer Electronics, Engineering, Food Technology, Graphics, Resistant Materials & Textiles at GCSE Level. The way the school is organised allows learners to select any 4 options that they want for GCSE level, and so learners can select all 4 options to be within the Design & Technology department.
At Key Stage 3 level, Learners rotated on a Carousel System between 4 different projects, spending 8 weeks on each. Learners have 2 hours worth of lessons, every week. This is the same in Key Stage 4 additionally.
OFSTED has graded the school as Good, stating;
“Students’ achievement is good. Most students throughout the academy made good progress and their achievement in English is good. However, students’ progress and attainment is weaker in mathematics.”
My second placement was at Dixons City Academy, located in the town of Bradford, West Yorkshire. In comparison to the first placement, Dixons City Academy has gone down the route of Product Design at GCSE and A-Level. While using this route, the school focuses Product Design into 3 paths; 3D Products, Food & Textiles at GCSE level, and 3D Products & Textiles being offered at A-Level. All learners within the school selects a path in Design & Technology at the end of Year 8, and they will study this for the next 3 years, which will end with their controlled assessment task. Within this, 3D Products is the most popular option, with Textiles following soon after.
At Key Stage 3 level, Learners also rotate around a Carousel System around 4 different projects within the 4 Design & Technology areas of Food Technology, Electronics, Resistant Materials and Textiles. In Key Stage 3 Learners have 2 hours of Design & Technology, which increases to 4 hours at Key Stage 4, and 5 hours at Key Stage 5.

OFSTED have graded the school as Outstanding, stating;
"Dixons City Academy is a high performing school that places the student at its heart. This is reflected in an academy ethos that enables students from many different backgrounds to grow in confidence and thrive as learners. A 'can-do' culture has been established in which expectations are high."
Comparing Timetables for Placements 1 & 2
Timetable for Placement 1
Timetable for Placement 2
Comparing The Two Placements
Comparing Planning for Placements 1 & 2
Planning for Placement 2
Planning for Placement 1
Comparing The Two Plans
Comparing Lesson Plans
Evaluation for the First Lesson taught on Placement 1
Evaluation for the Last Lesson Taught on Placement 2
Critical Reflection on Performance

upon Lesson Evaluations
Subject Knowledge Audit
Target Setting
Year 8 - Resistant Materials
Year 7 -
Year 7 - Graphics
Year 8 - Resistant Materials
Year 9 - Electronics
Core Skills - Graphics
The project was a Mechanical Cam Toy project where all learners replicate a crocodile design. The main skills gained within this topic include the different woods used (for example MDF and Pine Softwood), the different types of cams and motion and the practical skills which go along in making this project.
Same group as Monday Lesson 1, continuation of the same lesson.
The project was on Pop-Up Cards, where learners create a variety of pop-up card designs and mechanisms. The main skill gained was the practical ability in order to complete these mechanisms and learning the names of the different mechanisms.
Same group as Monday Lesson 4. Continuation of the same topic.
This project was featuring on Aborginal Art, with the end result being in learners creating a Boomerang at the end of the subject. The skills gained include cross-curricular links with geography, but they also gain skills with regards to what colours to use, and the practical skills within a workshop. This group is very low ability, and has a variety of different learning difficulties.
This project was an Acrylic Nightlight, which involved learners putting together an electrical circuit, before designing a Base for the circuit, which will be cut out and bent with a Line Bender. The circuit is then attached, and Solvent Cement is applied to fuse the pieces of acrylic to one another. The skills gained are within Electronic Symbols and Circuits along with the practical skills in completing this task.
A-Level - Product Design
Team Teaching with Host Teacher. My input was primarily to provide support during Practical Tasks and then teach select Theory Lessons

2 hour lesson
A-Level Product Design
See Lesson 1
Year 7 - Resistant Materials
AC Side of the Year Group - Initially working on the Gift in the Box project, giving them an introduction to different types of woods, working in a workshop, using TechSoft 2D Design, and using the CNC Router.
Year 11 - Product Design
Team Teaching with Host Teaching. Role primarily including providing support during Practical Tasks and teaching select Theory Lessons which will benefit them for their final exam.
Year 13 - Product Design
See Monday Lesson 1
Year 10 - Product Design
Team Teaching with Host Teacher, initially before eventually become main teacher, teaching Architecture before starting the controlled GCSE Assessment

2 Hour Lesson
Year 10 - Product Design
Year 8 - Clearly Different
CAD/CAM Project giving learners skills within CorelDraw, using a Laser Cutter and a Line Bender. It also ensures that learners persevere in order to create a high quality finish.
Year 7 - Gift in the Box
WY Side of the Year Group. Same lesson as AC Side.
Year 11 - Product Design
See Monday Lesson 5

2 Hour Lesson
Year 11 - Product Design
Year 7 - Gift in the Box
XY Side of the Year Group - Continuation of Tuesday Lesson 3
Year 7 - Gift in the Box
AC Side of the Year Group, same lesson as Monday Lesson 4
Year 7 - I-Learning
2 Hour Lesson focusing on Team Activities where learners develop skills within Perseverance, Team-Work and Creativity. These make up "Dixons Skills", which is something that is embedded within all learners. The tasks are set every week with something different happening on each lesson.
Year 7 - I-Learning
Year 9 - Product Design
Learners are working on a Pull Along Toy, developing skills within their practical making skills by creating numerous wood joints, to aid them with the manufacture of their Toy. Learners will also develop skills within drawing by completing Isometric Drawings and Orthographic Projections.
Year 9 - Product Design
Year 13 - Product Design
See Monday Lesson 1
AS Level - Product Design
Initally Team Teaching, helping learners as the completed their Practical Tasks for the year. This has seen developed into teaching the group theory based upon topics that they will be tested on in their AS-Level exam. The main technique used has been quizes in addition to PowerPoints.

2 Hours Long
AS Level - Product Design
Year 7 - ICT
This is a subject which I teach because the opportunity arose and I saw the potential in developing my skills elsewhere.

Learners spend their time working on Spreadsheets and are taught using Power Teaching, which allows all learners to be scaffolded.
By looking at both of my timetables, there a numerous items that are apparent. I believe that these timetables show a clear progression from Placement 1 and into Placement 2 and this has helped me develop as a teacher, and will prepare me in a major way for when I begin my NQT year.

For example, Placement 1 was very shallow in the amount of lessons that I would be involved in, never mind actually teach. Throughout the entire placement, I was only ever required to attend 8 Lessons, and I was only Solo Teaching six of these. Initially, I felt that this was a comfortable number to have, and it allowed me to focus my teaching on those lessons and I was able to prepare my resources fully. This gave me opportunities to use new technologies such as Prezi, to use within my lessons to further engage learners. However, after a few weeks, I found that I was getting complacent within these lessons and I wished to progress and take on additional responsibilities. With such little time left within placement, this wasn't entirely possible. I also felt that my teaching wasn't as impressive as what I should have been, and found that I was stuck inside my “bubble” because I was focusing on what I was teaching and not what was going on within the entire department.

In contrast, Placement 2 featured a wealth of experience and lessons. My mentor on this placement stated early on that whenever he was teaching, I would be in his lessons either teaching, observing or helping with practical work. This has helped me be entirely comfortable with a full timetable and this will benefit me as I progress into my NQT Year. I also found that the amount of lessons I was teaching was increasing, as I began to be given added responsibilities. I was informed that this was because I was impressing the department, and so they believed I could handle the added pressure. This was a benefit to me, as it meant that over the course of the placement, I have built up to a NQT timetable, which will help me towards the next year. I do feel however, that this large timetable has meant that the resources has suffered, because of the need to provide lesson plans. Looking forward towards the next year, I would prefer to spend my time creating the resources, as opposed to the detailed lesson plans I need to provide.

From a subject point of view, my first placement has me teach a lot of Graphics, as it was determined that this was my strongest area. I agreed with this assessment but I recognised that Graphics is losing popularity and the subject is moving more down a Product Design route. I also wasn't particular enthused with teaching Graphics, and would prefer a more practical subject. My 2nd Placement had me teach more Product Design based lessons, and has given me a specialism, so to speak, within Design & Technology. I have decided I would prefer to be a Master of 1 Subject, than be ok at them all. I would appreciate any opportunity to teach all subject areas however.
This is the first full length evaluation that I have written out from my first placement. It is from a Graphics Lesson, held on the 6th November 2011. This lesson was the 2nd lesson that I have held with this particular class, and they were on the verge of completing their final piece of work within this topic. The object of the lesson was to create a Pop-Up Card which is relating to Halloween & Bonfire Night, which are the closest two events that have happened prior to the lesson.
This is a Lesson Plan for a Resistant Materials lesson for Year 8 on the 9th November 2012. This will be the 1st lesson that I would have had this class and so it is important that I hit the ground running with what I felt was an engaging lesson that would hook learners into what is required of them.
This lesson plan is a Year 9 Product Design lesson on the 23/05/2013. The lesson was the 1st time I have solo taught this particular class, but it should illustrate how my planning has changed from the 1st Lesson Plan.
By comparing the Two Lesson Plans, it is able to show how my mindset as a teacher has changed from 1 area to the next. Firstly, I feel that the lesson plan on Placement 1 referred too much as what I, as the teacher, will be doing at all times. This was extremely useful for me as I initially started teaching as it meant that I always had something to do and I would be stuck in a situation where I am caught off guard, as I have thoroughly planned each activity with what I shall be doing at all times.

In comparison to my lesson plans now, I try to tailor them to best suit the learner. I personally try to ensure that every decision made is one which will benefit those being taught, and so the lesson wouldn't turn into a parade of the teacher. I believe this is most evident in how I use Evaluations from the previous lesson morph the learning that will take place within the current lesson. By placing this bullet pointed evaluation at the beginning of each lesson plan, it refreshes in my mind what particularly needs to be worked on and allows the lesson plan to focus upon this. Whether it be, behavioural issues or something that learners fail to understand – this will be communicated within the previous evaluation and this will aid a great deal in planning my lesson. Each of these evaluation points specifically relate to student learning, and it is a heavy focus of mine.

With the 1st Lesson Plan, I felt that I was writing things into the lesson plan to “fill it out”, and that the selection of Mini Plenaries were used so that the Teacher had something to do, and I could plan by the minute, which is what I believed is what I needed to do. Now, I recognise that learners may need more individual breathing time to work uninterrupted, and this is something that worked particularly well within the actual lesson that took place.

Outside of Lesson Plans, I feel that my resource planning has greatly improved. Within my 1st Placement, if I forgot a resource, it would interrupt a lesson and could potentially ruin it. However within Placement 2, I am picking up these resources almost at second nature, and it is greatly improving my lessons.
September 2012
January 2013
May 2013
The above images show my progression throughout the core competences within Design &Technology, and it shows a clear progression. Coming onto the course, I believed that my subject knowledge was poor in comparison to others and what was required. I aimed to rectify this as best as I could using my assignments and placement 1 to help me. Therefore, in January 2013, I was able to make a huge leap within my Electronics knowledge based upon the Subject Knowledge Enhancement task I had just completed. By May 2013, I felt my subject knowledge had greatly improved due to teaching more Key Stage 4 and 5 forcing me to improve. I also took time out to learn the disciplines of Food Technology and Textiles, taking part in such tasks to help build my subject knowledge.
W = Weak
OT = On Target
S = Strength
BP - Block Placement
FR - Formative Review
SR - Summative Review
The follow slide shows the progress that I have made over the course of my two block placements. I am initially targeted to be “2”, which means I need to be a Good Teacher before the end of my 2nd Placement, in order to reach my target. As you can see from Block Placement 1, I initially found this very difficult and couldn't seem to match with what my mentor was expecting of me, and so it resulted in me getting a much lower grade than I was supposed to get, meaning that I was under target.

However, moving forward into Placement 2, I took the criticisms on board and specifically focused my teaching in order to improve upon my weaknesses. This is apparent as I began to make my instructions clearer and easier to understand, and thus, my weakness became my strength. I also made a conscious effort to become more involved within school life, and this meant I no longer had a weakness in Standard 8. That said, it appears that I have made a slight slip with my subject knowledge, however – because of the added pressure that has come with Placement 2, for example teaching Key Stage 4 & 5, I still needed to work on my subject knowledge and so I volunteered to make this a weakness so that I have something to aim towards in my final summative review point.

I also believe the type of school means that different results can be achieved. I feel a lot more positive in Placement 2 due to the department and the attitude to learning. This has meant I spend much more time happily working on improving my own skills so that I can move onto another school and another department and instil this attitude towards learning to others.
Looking towards my NQT year
Currently, the area of Design & Technology teaching that I find the most rewarding is developing schemes of work or ideas for projects and then seeing them progress. I believe that my response to a problem or to a particular project will be completely different to that of 20 11-Year Old Learners, and it excites me to be able to see all of their responses to that problem. I am also inspired by the fact that in future years, learners will reference what they have learnt and achieved within their early years of Design & Technology, in Key Stage 3 into work they have aiming to achieve at Key Stage 4. This will tell me that I have done a good job, and will further inspire me to create new projects to keep this going within the future. I am inspired by looking at existing schemes of work, such as the De Stijl Clock project and seeing how the theory relates to the practical work, and I wish to develop these type of projects within the future. In the future, I also want to keep researching these different type of methodologies to create new exciting and worthwhile schemes of work which will make learners just as excited about Design & Technology as I am.

I believe that my main strengths are how personal I can be with learners. Especially with learners within Year 7, I am able to show my authority, if needs be, but do it with a smile on my face. This tells learners I am not doing it out of spite, I am doing it to follow rules. This confirms that the rules are important, and means they wouldn't be so keen to do this again. Another main strength is my willingness to learn and my drive to succeed. While this may sound clichéd, I acknowledge that I may not have the strongest subject knowledge but I know that I need to develop these skills if I wish to be the best Design & Technology teacher that I can be. I also acknowledge my additional weaknesses and listen to instructions which will help me improve. I feel my passion towards the subject is another major strength. I try to act as enthusiastic as I can when teaching, and I feel that this rubs off on many learners and encourages them to work hard within lesson.

In the future, I wish to improve all areas of my teaching. I feel that while I am making constant improvements with regards to differentiation, subject knowledge and overall teaching manner, I can still make greater improvements so that I can become an even better teacher. With regards to subject knowledge, I would be very keen to continue to develop my practical skills within areas such as Food Technology and Textiles. I am already fairly confident within Resistant Materials and Electronics, and so I would like to continue my development in other subject areas. Outside of DT teaching, I would like to improve my knowledge on common SEN related problems in the classroom and how to deal with team so that everyone gets a fair opportunity to learn.

Finally, looking into the future, I initially aspire to be a Form Tutor. I feel that this is the one area as a teacher that I am lacking with, and I enjoy the prospect of having also a small community of learners who I will see every single morning. I am excited by the possibilities of the relationships that will be gained here. Looking further ahead, I would love to gain additional responsibilities within the department. Initially, I'm aspiring to control the Key Stage 3 projects as I feel that these on the whole, could do with a lot more work, and that these are the launching pad into choosing DT at GCSE level and beyond. I recognise the importance of Key Stage 3 Design & Technology in building towards the future.
Evaluation for a Lesson on 23rd May 2013. This lesson was a Year 9 Product Design lesson focusing on Orthographic Projection.
By looking at the 2 Lesson Evaluations that had been completed at 2 different times within my placement, I am able to see how my personal view on teaching and learning has altered throughout my placements. My initial lesson evaluation shows that I was perhaps taking myself a little too lightly, and settled for inadequate teaching. Between these 2 placements, I believe that my mind set had changed and I inspired to be the best teacher that I could be, and providing the best learning experience possible for all learners. By Placement 2, I realised that I was having difficulties and I wasn't afraid to admit them, whereas my 1st placement school was not as forgiving within this regard. Since then, I have found that this improves my teaching as it gives me a focus for the next lesson and encourages me to improve.

My lesson evaluations have changed within Placement 2. While initially I used to have my Lesson Plans and Evaluations as completely different entities in completely different folders, I soon thought it made more sense that these work in conjunction with each other. This gave my evaluations much more of a focus and allowed me to specifically write in targets that will help me when writing my next lesson plan. This form of evaluation allows me to reflect upon my own practise as well as the work of the learners and ensures that I can find methods to improve both of these elements.

What stands out most is that on Placement 1, I seem to say "I'm doing well considering", whereas in my 2nd Placement I want to be doing well regardless of what is going on. I feel a good lesson is a good lesson if good teaching and planning is involved, not based upon the type of group or context of the lesson. This is especially apparent when it comes to managing behaviour. In both lesson plans, I acknowledge I need to make lessons engaging, and this is still something which constantly needs work on. These evaluations show progression within my teaching and shows how I can improve lesson by lesson.
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