Design and TechnologyGifted & Talented/Enrichment

G&T/Enrichment Statement

  • Design and Technology currently maintain a register of its Gifted and Talented pupils throughout years 7-13. Extra activities are currently organised for these pupils and they are encouraged to attend. However anyone with a specific interest and enthusiasm for D&T may also come along.
  • Gifted and Talented pupils are identified by the three D&T teachers who see special ability in the areas of designing and making.
  • There are also enrichment activities for all D&T pupils which aim to broaden horizons outside of the classroom.
  • All schemes of work within the department are differentiated for mixed abilities so the most able can be stretched within normal lessons.

The following webpage shows some of the work and activities carried out by Gifted and Talented Pupils in D&T.  It will also highlight some of the general enrichment activities for all D&T pupils.

Gifted and Talented/Enrichment Activities

Red Coat Awards

At the end of year 9 two pupils are selected for a ‘red coat award’ based on their project work completed throughout year 9. As a prize these two pupils are given an embroidered red workshop jacket which sets them apart from the standard white jackets. Below is a picture of Simon Tang in his jacket.

Red Coat awarded to Simon Tang     Red Coat awarded to Simon Tang

Year 7-9 Activities

Throughout years 7-9 a range of different activities are offered. Our Gifted and Talented pupils are encouraged to attend along with any other pupils with a specific interest. Below is a photo of Simon Tang in his Kite Buggy and Jasper Cattell’s grandmother clock.

Kite buggy     Grandmother clock

Extending the most able through project selection

Sam Smith's cricket fielding machineBoth GCSE and A-level courses require a substantial coursework project which can be geared to pupil ability. We therefore encourage our most talented designers to push themselves further through more challenging projects.  Below is Sam Smith's A2 coursework project; a cricket fielding machine. This is a uniquely innovative design which Sam is currently considering patenting. We have also had several students that, through their choice of a more challenging project, have been able to achieve full marks in their coursework. Victor Lio received an award from OCR for being in the top 2% nationally with his GCSE coursework project.

Mini Restoration

On Monday afternoons Mr Bowden (the DT technician) runs an activity for those pupils who are interested in cars. This year's project is the complete restoration of a 1970's Mini Mayfair. Mark is extremely experienced in this area, having already spent his entire summer holiday restoring a Mini for one of his friends. He is able to pass on his expert advice to these budding engineers.

Mini restoration     Mini restoration

3D printing

The D&T department have just bought a new 3D printer which is able to make parts in order to replicate itself. Every Monday evening during quiet hour, G&T pupils will embark on making a Rep Rap machine (shown below). They will then use this machine to print their own designs in 3D from CAD software.

3D printer     3D printer

Arkwright Scholarships

Arkwright ScholarshipsAt the end of year 11 we encourage our most talented pupils to apply for an Arkwright Scholarship which provides them with funding throughout year 12 and 13. This allows pupils to take on more ambitious projects that might otherwise be financially out of reach. Previous Scholars have included Tom Boxall and Douglas Morton (pictured below). For more info go to:

Arkwright Scholarship - Tom Boxall     Arkwright Scholarship - Douglas Morton

Oliver Blackwell Working with a professional designer

Oliver Blackwell is an extremely accomplished Industrial Designer who works with our 6th form pupils in conjunction with their coursework projects. He is able to give our most able pupils a completely different perspective outside the constraints of an examining board's specification. Acting as a client and a mentor he inspires and encourages Blundellians. Below are examples of some of his latest work and a link to his website. His most successful design (a revolutionary extension lead) will soon be available in major shops such as Tesco and Maplin. (

Oliver Blackwell - website page featuring his 'WashDryIron' machineOliver Blackwell - extension lead


PDF - the Stem DirectoryWithin the D&T STEM directory there are a large number of extension activities which we encourage our most able students to undertake in their own time. These range from competition projects, links with industry and one day events. These are entirely optional and the motivation must come from the pupil. The Design and Technology department is always open to any pupil wishing to pursue his/her own interests.

Yr 10 early entry and Extended Project Qualification (Level 2)

etbhWith new GCSE specifications coming on line this year there is an opportunity for talented year 10 pupils next year. A hard working and able pupil will have the opportunity to complete their GCSE in one year instead of the normal two. This will then allow that pupil to take an extended project qualification in year 11. Our current GCSE examining board; AQA, run a Level 2 extended project which is a free standing qualification used as an extension from GCSE. We are currently considering this as an option for next September 2011.

External Design Competitions

There are many design competitions currently available for pupils to enter and we encourage our most able students to take part in the competition process as it focuses presentation skills and can open up opportunities with business and industrial links. Douglas Morton (pictured below) gained third place in the TEP design awards, a national U16 design competition with his coffee table designed for compact living (it transformed into a dining room table in three simple moves).

Gifted and Talented Futures

Blundell's is of course a stepping stone which leads to University and careers, so where do the D&T department's most talented go?

Paul Vooght

Paul was an extremely able Designer/maker who produced two exceptional projects in his AS and A2 year – a Luge board and a pair of stunt skis. After gaining an extremely high A grade in A-level Product Design Paul has now gone to Loughborough University where he is studying Industrial Design and Technology. We still keep in contact with Paul and he regularly brings in his latest work. Paul has aced a first for his first two years and has continued to develop as a designer since leaving Blundell’s.

Paul Vooght - stunt skis     Paul Vooght - luge board

Douglas Morton

After gaining an Arkwright scholarship and producing some extremely inventive coursework projects Douglas has moved on to study Product Innovation (BSc) at the University of Hull. We are hoping one day to see him winning a successful bid on Dragon's Den. We try to encourage ex-pupils to visit the department regularly and talk to current pupils about their university projects.

Douglas Morton - speaker     Douglas Morton - table     Douglas Morton - control panel

Class Enrichment

As a department we are also continually looking for ways to take our pupils out of the classroom environment so they can have their eyes opened to the real world of Design and Technology. Each year the GCSE Graphic Products group visit the Clothes Show and Ms Drew has also set up links within industry for pupils' work experience placements. A-level groups have also visited manufacturing plants, such as Jaguar, where they can learn first-hand about mass production techniques and the internal workings of the manufacturing industry. We have also visited Plymouth University's industrial design degree show, which provides valuable inspiration for our pupils.

Graphic Products G&T

The Clothes show is a wonderful opportunity for the pupils of Graphic Products to view examples of Exhibition Design, Packaging and Advertising, as well as Fashion and Surface Texture Design too.

Clothes ShowClothes Show

Clothes ShowThis enrichment trip is just one of many experiences that the students encounter on GCSE Graphic Products. We run trips to other educational establishments such as SCAT to show the pupils the range of Degree courses that Graphics can open the door to.  This, hopefully, inspires them to new creative heights when they view other innovative designs.

Visiting lecturers are another way of leading and teaching by example. We have a number of outstanding contacts in industry, including Toucan Design, and Sarah Tutt, all of which have helped the pupils became all round creatives in their own right.

Miss D. Drew
GCSE Graphic Products