2021 Design Briefs – Materials Technology Wood

Junior Certificate Examination, 2021 | Materials Technology Wood | Coursework – Design Briefs |
Ordinary Level and Higher Level | MTW Briefs 2021 | JC MTW Design Briefs 2021

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Return to School Guidance for Practical Subjects in Post-Primary Schools and Centres for Education

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2. Wood Technology/Construction Studies, Engineering, Applied Technology/Technology and Graphics/DCG

  • All machines and hand tools should be cleaned/sanitised after the last lesson each day.
  • For each individual lesson, the cleaning (with disinfectant wipes) of machines and tools should be done by the students and built into the typical housekeeping procedures that are the norm in practical classrooms such as cleaning down work areas, sweeping floors and general clean-up. For example, if a student uses a pillar drill, disinfectant wipes should be provided beside this machine and students should clean any contact areas after each use.
  • Where practical, students should only use the hand tools assigned to them and not interchange these with other students. For example, in a Wood Technology lesson, students should only use their assigned chisels, mallet and marking-out equipment. Where hand tools such as measuring tapes and vernier calipers have to be shared, these should be wiped clean between each use.
  • For the preparation and handling of student material such as metal, perspex, paper and timber, teachers should wear gloves to avoid direct contact, where it is safe to do so. A similar approach should be used when handing out this material to students. Where practical, designated storage space within the classroom should be made available for each individual class group to store their materials between lessons in order to reduce the risk of other students coming into contact with the materials.
  • All students studying the Technology subjects should have their own safety goggles for using equipment such as the bandsaw or scroll saw. These should be kept and stored safely by each student and cleaned at home each evening. If a student is studying more than one of the practical subjects (including Science), one set of goggles is adequate.
  • For practical demonstrations, digital technology such as the visualiser could be used to reduce the need for students to group together. Many visualisers also have the capability to record demonstrations so this will provide an additional support for students.
  • It is important that face coverings are worn during lessons and unnecessary movement around the room should be avoided.

Distance Teaching & Learning

The challenges of teaching Wood Technology over The Lockdown was something that we had never experienced before.  Having to step away from the physical classroom and teach from home was something that took a some time to get used to.  Personally, I found it difficult to manage and structure my own day not to mention deciding on a plan for my new digital classroom.  My focus began to shift from a forty minute, content-driven lesson to a more student-centred approach as I began to ask myself some questions:


“How can I improve student engagement?”

“How can I make sure that my students will participate tomorrow?”

“Can I give positive and worthwhile feedback?”


Fortunately, our school had already been using Google Classroom with our students and so the structure was already there for distance teaching and learning.  So this made it easy for me to assign, collect and grade work from students as well as providing a mode of communication.  Being able to assign activities and exercises from our books meant that:


+ I had a coherent approach across all year groups.

+ There was little change from the classroom.

+ My students continued to develop their knowledge and skills.

+ We all had a structured approach to each lesson.

+ Students knew exactly what was expected of them.

+ The students who were willing to put in more time were able to continue improving.

+ We all had a record of work done and notes to be revised later.


Being able to ensure a high quality of distance teaching and learning is something that has become the new standard of education.