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Design & Technology

Production techniques

Whether a product is being designed and made by you in school or by an international company, it is essential to have the right tools for the job. It is also essential to select the right materials, and to work out in advance which techniques and processes will be used to shape them.

Planning a sequence of work

Charts are used to plan out the use of time, and the stages in the making of the product. There are several different types of planning chart.

Gantt charts

Gantt charts are useful for planning complex projects. They show the tasks involved in making a product, with any overlaps between different tasks. Gantt charts usually use colour to indicate separate tasks or workflows.

In week 1 and 2, all sketch ideas. In week 2 and 3, Ann & Ross carry out market research. In week 3 and 4, Arjun & Coren design a prototype. In week 4 & 5, Lucy and Chris test the prototype. In week 5, Saul and Lesley make modifications. In week 6, all produce the final product. In week 7, all display the final product

Flowcharts

Start, sand down edge, is edge smooth? yes - paint product, stop. No - sand down edge.

Flowcharts describe a sequence. All flowcharts use the same symbols, linked with arrows to show the direction of the flow.

  • start and finish are rectangular with rounded corners
  • process boxes are rectangular with square corners
  • decision boxes are diamond shaped

Sequence diagrams

Sequence diagrams show the process of making a product in words and pictures.

Sequence diagram

An easy-to-follow sequence diagram to make a mouse puppet. Step 1: Use as small ball and cardboard for the head. Step 2: Draw a pattern for the body on fabric and cut out. Step 3: Attach the pieces together and add buttons for eyes and string for whiskers.
  1. Use a small ball and cardboard to make the head.
  2. Draw a pattern for the puppet body shape and cut.
  3. Use string to make whiskers for the final touch.

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