Ryan Ball is head of Design & Technology at Garden International School, Kuala Lumpur. He is in his 14th year of teaching, having worked in several schools across the UK and internationally. Active on Facebook and Twitter, he set up the DT Teachers Middle East and DT Teachers Malaysia groups, where he shares resources and ideas. Member of the IET and Teacher Foresight group, he is also a DT consultant for Ofqual and an author for CGP DT revision books.
Design Technology in schools has been going through a rough patch for many years now, as it tries to shake-off its image of a stuffy subject making bird-boxes and cushions for no real reason other than teaching out-dated, limited-use skills. In many areas of Asia there is also a lack of understanding of the subject, and it is often judged as a less academic and therefore less important subject. Despite swathes of students progressing to universities to study Engineering, Design Technology often doesn’t have large numbers of students opting for the subject and parents fail to appreciate the value of the curriculum.