Design and Technology (D&T) KS2: How to make a structure stronger

This short film for primary schools explores the key properties of structures and how they can be refined and changed to make them stronger.

It is an ideal introduction to any design and technology unit dealing with construction.

It explores different approaches to construction and explains the features of structures that make them stronger and more resilient.

Teacher Notes

This short film is an ideal tool to introduce pupils to the techniques that can be used to make structures stronger.

As they watch the film, pupils can give their own thoughts on why they think some structures are stronger than others.

They can also try to relate these ideas to everyday structures and objects, which will help them link theory and practice.

Points for discussion:

  • What considerations have to be taken into account when designing a structure?
  • Which are the stronger shapes to use when creating a structure?
  • How can structures be altered to make them stronger?
  • Why are some structures weaker than others?

Suggested activities:
After watching the film, you could work with pupils to investigate structures in different contexts.

The pupils could be given the opportunity to build their own structures, making predictions about their strength, and testing them to see if they were correct.

Pupils could explore annotated diagrams of structures to find out why some are stronger than others.

Pupils could also look for real life examples of structures in various contexts using books and on the internet.

Curriculum Notes

Suitable for teaching design and technology (D&T) at KS2 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and 1st and 2nd level in Scotland.

More from this series:

How to make a structure waterproof