SECONDARY D&T ADVICE FOR WORKING WITH
                               EAL/ BME PUPILS


It is crucial to remember that the experiences pupils bring with them will vary
considerably. Some will have enjoyed rich opportunities on which they can draw
when designing and making, whilst others will have had few experiences, including
those they wish to forget. Some families will have brought with them a wealth of
materials that they can share to support design and technology activities. Others will
have none. It is important not to make assumptions about a pupil’s prior

The subject should offer the pupil the opportunities to intervene creatively in
designing and making processes to develop products that improve quality of life and
make a difference. These opportunities should encourage them to interact, to
discuss and to use new words in a non-threatening environment.

Planning for inclusion

The national curriculum is the starting point for planning a school curriculum that
meets the specific needs of newly arrived pupils. The national curriculum inclusion
statement outlines how teachers can modify, as necessary, the national curriculum
programmes of study to provide all pupils with relevant and appropriately challenging
work at each Key Stage. It sets out three principles that are essential to developing
a more inclusive curriculum:

       setting suitable learning challenges
       responding to pupils' diverse learning needs
       overcoming potential barriers to learning and assessment for individuals and
        groups of pupils.

Setting suitable learning challenges

Although all the units in the DfES/QCA scheme of work for Key Stage 3 are relevant
for many pupils from a range of cultures, it may be appropriate to adapt a context in
order to set a more suitable learning challenge. Teachers should aim to give every
pupil the opportunity to experience success by considering each project that the
pupils will undertake and identifying areas that may be within and outside of each
pupil’s experience. Teachers should then build on prior experience and try to
introduce new areas.

Opportunities could be taken to highlight the range of experiences that pupils from
different cultures can contribute to whole-class or group product analysis
activities. Food and textiles focus areas in particular provide numerous
opportunities for pupils to learn and talk about a variety of flavours, textures,
designs and ways of living.

When setting product evaluation activities teachers should:

       think about the products that the pupils may have experience of
       find examples from a range of countries and cultures, including local products,
        for the class to evaluate
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       allow the pupils time to identify relevant sources of information and develop
        criteria for their designs
       encourage pupils to consider aesthetics and other issues that they feel are
        important when reconciling design decisions
       use technical vocabulary so the pupils can learn the correct English word (but
        be aware that some words do not exist in, or cannot be translated into, other

When setting focused practical tasks teachers should:

       identify the key skills or areas of knowledge and understanding to be covered
       allow time for exploration and investigation of materials, both familiar and
       plan extra hands-on activities for selecting and using tools, equipment
        and processes
       ensure that clear demonstrations are given relating to the correct use of tools
       constantly use correct technical vocabulary and try different ways of
        reinforcing the language.

When setting design and make assignments teachers should:

       try to make the context a challenge that all pupils can recognise. It is crucial
        not to reinforce stereotypes
       plan the possible support that might be needed from both technicians and
        peers. Incorporate different methods of helping pupils to design, including
        exploring materials, working out ways of modelling ideas and working
        alongside others
       if appropriate, provide a visual designing and making framework to be
        followed to inform planning
       use a variety of methods of evaluation such as talking to pupils individually or
        in a small group focusing on each stage of product development using words
        and demonstration.

Responding to pupils' diverse learning needs

The following specific actions have proved successful in responding to pupils’
diverse learning needs in a range of schools.

New entrants were:

       kept within the whole class where the focus for work was not different but the
        support was differentiated in order to secure motivation and concentration
        (examples include pairing with another pupil who spoke the same language or
        dialect, had a similar personality, or spoke a different language but had the
        ability to be patient)
       seated in the centre of the workshop or studio to ensure that they felt part of
        the group and had an equal opportunity to be part of any demonstration
       exposed to different teaching styles to help include all.


       ensured that pupils were offered opportunities to contribute from their
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       ensured that there was more interaction and less direct teaching
       built in thinking time or ’wait time’ so that the pupils could gather their
        thoughts, explain themselves in an appropriate way or talk to a peer or adult
        in the first instance
       created a project exhibition to reinforce learning and added to it as the work
       used all appropriate ICT to enhance different teaching and learning styles.

Overcoming potential barriers to learning and assessment for individuals and
groups of pupils

Some newly arrived pupils will have needs that are linked to their progress in
learning English. Teachers are expected to plan their approaches to teaching and
learning so that all pupils can take part in lessons. This will include the planning of
work that is accessible for pupils learning English as an additional language, as well
as work that extends their language skills.

This may mean pupils using their first language in design and technology lessons.
Engagement and access to design and technology can be impeded if a pupil’s first
language is not appropriately supported. The DfES guidance Access and
engagement in design and technology: teaching pupils for whom English is an
additional language applies the principles of the Key Stage 3 national strategy to the
teaching and learning of design and technology for EAL pupils.

The guidance suggests strategies to help teachers provide access for pupils at
different points of learning English. It is important to support them to develop both
their understanding and use of the English language and to enhance their learning in
design and technology lessons. The 'English as an additional language' area of this
site provides guidance on this.

Everyone who is part of the school should understand how all pupils bring richness
to it through the diversity of cultures and religions. They need to respect each
contribution and learn from it. The school may have pupils from a different number
of countries and cultures at various times. In order to overcome potential barriers to
learning in design and technology in particular, it is important to ensure that the full
range of cultures are represented in designing and making contexts and activities.
The 'Culturally diverse and inclusive curriculum' area of this site gives guidance on

Teachers must ensure that evidence of learning is celebrated and fairly assessed in
ways that take on board relative progress in learning English. The 'Assessment for
learning' area of this site gives guidance on how this might apply to new arrivals.

Whilst recognising potential barriers to learning and assessment can be difficult, it is
important to gain as much information as possible about the experiences the pupils
have had through a sensitive audit. This should include the materials the pupils
have used, the skills they have experienced, the type of teaching and learning
environment they are familiar with, and their cultural, religious and social values. It is
crucial to identify particular contexts that are not appropriate to use.

The information can be gained through, for example:

       talking to adults such as parents and community leaders or workers

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       giving the pupils opportunities to explore different products, identifying their
        areas of interest so that these can be built upon.

Case study

Puzzle in a box: an example of good design and technology practice in year 7
The case study describes the learning environment and the design and technology
activities with a class that included newly arrived pupils from culturally diverse

Useful web links

Please note: QCA is not responsible for the content of external sites.

Beyton Middle School
This school's website contains useful links.

Masabo Culture Company
A Canadian site about West African music, dance and storytelling. This site contains
a learning resources links page.

National curriculum in action
This website uses pupils' work and case-study materials to show what the national
curriculum in design and technology looks like in practice.

A useful site for people collecting products from different cultures.

QCA: Respect for all in design and technology
This guidance encourages teachers to reflect on the values embedded in existing
educational approaches and materials. This area contains design and technology
examples of good practice. The examples provide effective learning opportunities
for pupils to value diversity and challenge racism. They focus on helping pupils to
understand and appreciate aspects of cultural difference, context and change while
challenging and extending their perceptions of themselves and other people.

Princeton online
A website that has a useful section on world cultures.

This is a global online community that is a source of information on issues,
opportunities to take action, and ways of getting involved locally, nationally and
globally. Membership is free of charge and allows you to interact with various
aspects of the website and to contribute ideas, experiences and actions.

The British Empire and Commonwealth Museum
The 'Learning journeys' area of this website provides a wide range of educational
experiences for everyone of any age. Workshops involve groups actively and link
directly to the national curriculum. You will find details of suitable courses for
teachers in London.

Traidcraft is the UK’s leading fair trade organisation. On the website you will find
information about different countries and resources they produce which might
support your teaching.

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