> Longfield Academy, Darlington

Longfield Academy, Darlington

About the activity

Tuesday 2nd April saw 19 year 9 engineering pupil visit Cummins Engine Plant in Darlington to participate in their ‘Engineering in School’ programme.

The day was planned around pupils learning about ‘The Engineering Process’, helping pupils to link what they are learning at school to engineering.

Through a series of workshops and presentations, pupils learned about:

  • Cummins and the diesel engine and how it works
  • Engineering principles exploring gears, torque and power
  • Manufacturing of components (which used Lego to look at the manufacturing process and how the design of the process can increase production)
  • Engineering Careers, including different routes into the sector
  • A plant tour including a visit to the engine testing facility

During the final activity of the day pupils worked as a team to design and build a Meccano vehicle to complete a course made up of a variety of terrain. This activity allowed them to apply some of what they had learned during the day. The teams also had to present to the rest of the group about their designs and the challenges they had overcome. The winning team was the one that had met the design brief, as well as worked well as a team and delivered a good presentation to the group.

Gatsby Benchmarks

The activity targets benchmark four, five and six.

These were pupils who had chosen to study engineering and the event helped them to link what they were learning in school to a real engineering context.

Visiting an employer allowed the pupils to build a clearer picture of what an engineering firm could look like, the roles involved and some of the skills needed.

The event was hosted by university students who were on a secondment with Cummins as part of their degree. Pupils were able to talk to these students about their job roles and also university courses.

Next steps

19 pupils and two staff were involved in the day.

‘It was a great opportunity for pupils to find out more about one of our local employers but also a company that has a global presence. Working with university students on placement years helped pupils picture where they could be in a few years’ time.’ Careers Adviser

Quotes from pupils:

‘The day has made me think about an apprenticeship at Cummins.’

‘I learnt about what they do at Cummins which was a lot more than I thought.’

‘I now know a lot more about possible opportunities at Cummins.’

‘The day helped me understand the skills engineers need.’

‘I now have more knowledge about all the different sectors in engineering.’

‘I liked the fact there were lots of different activities. My favourite part was making the Meccano vehicle. It was a team effort and I know that having good teamworking skills will help me succeed in my future job.’

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