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Ministry of Education.
Kaua e rangiruatia te hāpai o te hoe; e kore tō tātou waka e ū ki uta

Personalised pen – Unit plan


Personalised pens 3 th

Year 7 Materials

  • Context: Writing tools
  • Key focus: Materials

Class description/Students past experiences:

Year 7 students. No experience in the technology rooms. Little understanding of technological practice.

Resources required:
  • 3mm Acrylic, card, masking tape, coping saws, scroll saws, ink refills

Safety considerations

Refer to Safety in technology education: A guidance manual for New Zealand schools (April 2017)

  • Safe use of hand tools
  • Use of scroll saws

Curriculum links

Key focus: (Technological practice)

  • Planning for practice
  • Outcome development and evaluation
  • Introducing the technology cycle
  • Functional models


Context specific skill/knowledge:

  • Experience in working with plastic
  • Sketching and rendering
  • Construction of MDF models
  • Safe use of tools and equipment.
  • Correct use of tools and equipment


Key competencies

  • Using language symbols and text
  • Managing self
  • Relating to others
  • Thinking
  • Participating and contributing



  • Key stakeholder values


Cross curriculum links

  • Maths – measuring
  • Problem solving
  • English – evaluative skills

Learning outcomes and assessment

Predetermined specific learning outcomes


  • develop skills in working with plastics
  • develop knowledge of plastic performance
  • develop 2D sketching and rendering techniques
  • develop an understanding of the Key stages in the technology cycle (CoT)
  • undertake own time management to ensure the completion of a quality outcome (PfP)
  • undertake modelling as a form of testing and trialling (ODE and TM)
  • apply knowledge and skills in the manufacture of a quality solution (ODE).

Assessment strategies

  • Observation of tool selection and use to produce an outcome.
  • Discussion with students about knowledge of how to work materials to form products.
  • Teacher checks through ongoing formative discussions with each student and marking of portfolios to ensure all students have: developed concepts, tested mock-ups, completed an outcome in given time, evaluated outcome against performance specs.
  • Observation of cooperation between students.

Assessment (45kb) – This Word doc contains student self-assessment and teacher assessment rubrics.

Lesson outline

Worksheets (71kb) – Download this Word doc for students to work through the design process. 

Lesson 1

Lesson sequence Resources Learning intentions

Introduction into course

Roll and bench seating plan

Intro to the workshop:

  • explain tools on benches and walls
  • machines and uses.



Codes of practice – Safety in the environment of practice

  • Show students through workshop. Focus on dangers and safe use of equipment.
  • Explain duties / routines.




  • are aware of their surroundings and the dangers that lie within.
  • understand that they are responsible for their own actions.


Introduce technology cycle

  • Introduce the technology cycle (relate this to technological products e.g: Juicy cart)
  • What is technology? (Give examples: Camera)
  • Give out Brief and explain key stages in the process. (Relate to the Technology cycle)
  • Show students a technology folio and explain process and assessment.
  • Talk about key stakeholder and stakeholder interests / hobbies.


Student module booklet:

  • technology cycle
  • on board
  • show examples of a technology folio


Students can:

  • develop understanding of technological process
  • relate the process of technology to the new context.


Technological knowledge

Introduce students to plastics:

  • explain the difference between thermoplastics and thermoset
  • show them a piece of acrylic and explain its properties
  • explain why it has protective paper on each side of it.

Skills development

Key stages – teach skills, (related to knowledge and understanding in brief.)

  • mock ups
  • testing / trialling
  • gluing
  • marking out
  • drilling
  • cutting out
  • finishing – filing / sanding
  • polishing

The teacher demonstrates use of tools, i.e. use of rulers, measuring, metric system and how to measure a rectangle 65mm x 35mm onto a piece of card.

Draw two rectangles then demonstrate how to draw a random design and a symmetrical design.

Cut out the shapes.

Students choose two pieces of acrylic and the teacher glues them together.

The students then mark out their shape onto one of the surfaces of the acrylic.

The teacher then explains and demonstrates why we drill the hole for the split ring first, before cutting out the shape. Explain why waste wood is placed behind the acrylic when drilling the hole.

The students then proceed to drill the hole.

 Workshop equipment and processes:

  • Student booklet
  • Instruction sheet

Knowledge and understanding

  • Workshop facilities
  • Hand tools
  • Card



  • Gain an understanding of the correct use of equipment and tools.
  • Are competent in using tools safely
  • Experience using plastic as a material.
  • Safe workshop practices


Lesson 2

Lesson sequence Resources Learning intentions

Students go to assigned benches and the roll is called.

The teacher then recaps on the last lesson.

Then introduces the hand tools and machine tools that are appropriate to cut out the shape.

The coping saw and scroll saw – the teacher demonstrates the use of both tools as a method of cutting out the shapes keeping to the waste side of the line.

Codes of practice, i.e. safety in practice with the use of tools and machines. Correct working procedures to gain desired outcome.

Once the shape is cut out the teacher demonstrates how to file down to the line using a range of files:

  • course file
  • medium file
  • fine file.


  • gain an understanding of the correct use of equipment and tools
  • are competent in using tools safely
  • experience using plastic as a material
  • gain an understanding of how to produce a high quality finish.


Demonstrate how to round the edge using the fine file.

The teacher then demonstrates how to sand the edges smooth using three grades of paper progressively getting the edges smoother.

  • 120g sand paper
  • 220g sand paper
  • 600g wet and dry sand paper. (Explain why we use wet and dry sand paper)

The teacher then demonstrates how to polish the edges using Jif and a rag.


Refer to the class brief

Ask the students to choose a key stakeholder – someone to design the pen for (usually a family member).

Student module booklet

  • Technology cycle
  • On board



  • understand technological terminology


Lessons 3 – 7

Lesson sequence Resources Learning intentions
Technology cycle    

Introduction to issue

Revise the technology cycle.

Introduce the issue of pens and the use of these as promotional material and the fact that they come in all shapes and sizes.

Introduce class brief and discuss attributes/specifications.

Technology cycle flow chart.

Examples of required stationary.

Year 9 teachers handbook

Students understand the:

  • aims of the course and how graphics is an integral part of technology
  • stages of the technology cycle and those specific to that term.


Reflect on key stakeholder and stakeholder interests / hobbies / likes / dislikes.

Complete the first page in their brief (this can be completed for homework if not done in class)

  • Choose the key stakeholder
  • Write a conceptual statement (who its for / what its for / why)
  • Write down the key attributes/specs

Talk about restrictions and the importance of planning to make sure their pen is finished in time and to a high standard.

Talk about the key stages and the time available (6 sessions)

  • What resources are needed at the different stages during the project?
  • With teacher guidance draw this on the worksheet headed "Planning".

Students understand:

  • the importance of planning
  • what resources are needed to work through the process.



Develop ideas for possible pen designs.

Teach students about 2D sketches and the use of Design ideas. Use the work sheet.

Draw concepts that meet stakeholder interests. Apply annotations to support ideas.(Design ideas must fit into the drawn rectangle.)


Drawing equipment

Colouring pencils


  • develop an understanding of the stakeholders needs
  • understand and apply 2D sketching skills to visually communicate their design ideas.


Mock up / Model: 

Use mock-up to test design ideas and to make modifications to the product. (scale 1:1) Use the mock-ups as a template.

Development: Use the model as a template to make modifications. Apply the feedback given to you by the stakeholder. Make any adjustments requested and show this on the development worksheet. Support changes / modifications with annotations.

Drawing equipment

Card, scissors, rulers

3mm mdf




  • learn and demonstrate how to cut and fold card
  • learn to safely use scrollsaws and coping saws
  • understand the importance of using a mock-up as a form of testing and trialling.


Final brief: Create a final written statement that explains:

  • who the pen is for
  • the theme of the pen and why.


Worksheet Students understand the importance of a final brief
Working drawing: Teach 2D drawings – Elevations and how to apply dimensions. Worksheets.Formal drawing and dimensions. Students understand the importance of accuracy to create a quality outcome.


  • Development of Final Outcome (Workshop Practice/ application of skill development)
  • Gluing procedures and safe use
  • Transferring the final design to the acrylic
  • Cutting out the shape – use of scroll saws and coping saws. (Codes of practice)
  • Finishing techniques to achieve high quality end product – filing / sanding / polishing


  • Workshop equipment
  • Glues (plastic)

Continuum of skills development learnt previously.

Students apply relevant knowledge and skills to manufacture an outcome.

Plastics theory

  • Teach types of plastics and properties / uses.
  • Termoplastic/Thermoset
  • Steps needed to produce a high quality finish.
  • Advantages and disadvantages of acrylic


Plastic hand-out

Handout on finishing plastic

Information on properties


Students can identify the material they are working with and possible implications in using plastics.

Lesson 8

Lesson sequence Resources Learning intentions

Portfolio presentation and evaluation

  • Talk to the students about how to evaluate their outcome and complete the evaluation sheet.
  • Give out the Assessment rubric – explain the terminology and ask students to complete these and hand them in.
  • Give out blank portfolios (folded card).
  • Explain using the examples how to assemble their portfolio, explain that presentation is important.


Evaluation sheet

Assessment Rubric

Portfolio card, craft knifes and cutting mats


Demonstrate how to use the cutting mats and craft knifes to cut accurate rectangles to mount their photos and titles.

Demonstrate how to glue their pages onto their portfolios.

  Students take pride in their presentation of their work.

(Click on images to enlarge)


Worksheets (71kb) – Support students to work through the design process.

Assessment (45kb) – Student self-assessment and teacher assessment rubrics.

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