Design in Production

By Daniel Nelson, August 26, 2008

Grade Level

  • High School


  • Product Design

Subject Area

  • Social Studies
  • Technology

Lesson Time

ten to fourteen class periods


You’ve designed a product, created prototypes, tested, recreated and tested again. What happens next? This unit will introduce students to the selection, design, and development of a manufacturing system to produce their product. Students will examine the historical role of mass production in the development of American business and industry. After research and discussion, students will apply their knowledge in designing a production system to fabricate a component (or components) of a product.

National Standards

 Common Core Standards

Anchors for Reading:

Key Ideas and Details:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.1 Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.2 Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.3 Analyze how and why individuals, events, or ideas develop and interact over the course of a text.

Craft and Structure:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.4 Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.5 Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., a section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.6 Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a text.

Integration of Knowledge and Ideas:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.7 Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.8 Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, including the validity of the reasoning as well as the relevance and sufficiency of the evidence.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.9 Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take.

 Range of Reading and Level of Text Complexity:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.10 Read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently.

Anchor Standards for Writing:

Text Types and Purposes:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.1 Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details and well-structured event sequences.

Research to Build and Present Knowledge:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.9 Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

Range of Writing:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.10 Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.

Anchor standards for Speaking and Listening:

Comprehension and Collaboration:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.1 Prepare for and participate effectively in a range of conversations and collaborations with diverse partners, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.2 Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.

Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.4 Present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.6 Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and communicative tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate.

Anchor standards for Language:

Conventions of Standard English:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.L.1 Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.

Vocabulary Acquisition and Use:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.L.4 Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases by using context clues, analyzing meaningful word parts, and consulting general and specialized reference materials, as appropriate.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.L.6 Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases sufficient for reading, writing, speaking, and listening at the college and career readiness level; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge when encountering an unknown term important to comprehension or expression.


Students will:
  • conduct research using the internet
  • analyze and evaluate information from multiple sources
  • know that that there are different types of manufacturing systems
  • understand the development  of production systems for manufacturing products
  • design operations flow charts
  • design process flow charts for product components
  • understand facility layout
  • design a facility layout to improve production


  • manufacturing systems
  • mass production
  • operation and process flow charts
  • technology equipment


  • Operations Flow Chart
  • Process Flow Chart
  • Mass Production notes
  • Mass Production article


Prior knowledge:
  • Instruction in the safe and proper use of required hand and power tools
  • Ability to read working drawings
  • Ability to write and understand Plans of Procedure
  • Previous design or selection of a product with working drawings
  Activity 1:  Background 1.  Assign readings/research on manufacturing systems, mass production, and the contributions of Eli Whitney, Oliver Evans, Fredrick Taylor, and Henry Ford. Have students present their research to the class for discussion.  Teacher will wrap up on manufacturing systems and mass production. Activity 2:  Selecting Operations 1.  From a pre-selected product, determined by resources available to you and your students, assign a product component to each student (working individually or in groups) to determine the operations required to manufacture the component. Have students study the features of the component, list the tasks to be performed for each feature, and select the method (tool) for completing the task. Activity 3:  Determining Sequencing Operations 1.  Once the operations (create a hole) and methods (drill) have been selected, students must put them in the proper order. Students will determine the sequence of operations and complete a sequence of operations flow chart for their assigned (or all) parts of the product. Activity 4:  Design a Flow Process Chart 1.  Efficiency in production is the goal. Consideration must be given to transporting the component from workstation to workstation, quality control inspections, delays, and storage of parts between operations. 2.  Provide or have students create a floor plan of your shop indicating stationary equipment locations, work tables, material storage, and product storage locations. 3.  Using a process flow chart, students will design and chart a sequence of operations to include inspections, delays, transportation and storage. Activity 5:   Pilot Run : Test Your Plant Flow Chart 1.  Students run a/all component(s) through the system. Students will observe the flow of material.  Problems and bottle-necks can be identified. The pilot run may indicate the need for additional operations, a change in sequencing or a reorganization of equipment.


Activity 1: Manufacturing Systems: Assessment  based on understanding of:
  • differentiating between the four types of systems
  • advantages/disadvantages of each system
Mass production: Assessment on understanding of:
  • definition principles of mass production
  Activity 2: For each student/component Score the assignment based on correct:
  • determinations of operations
  • list of tasks to be performed
  • method of completing task
Activity 3:   For each student/component Score the assignment based on correct:
  • sequence of operations and completion of flow chart
  Activity 4:   For each student/component: Score the assignment based on comparing the student chart to a master chart developed by the instructor. Activity 5:   N/A    

Enrichment Extension Activities

Activity 6:  Design "Your" Plant Layout
  • Using the floor plan of your facility and access to any quantity of equipment, design a continuous manufacturing to produce your product.  Design a facility layout to maximize production.
  • Visit a woodworking and /or metal shop fabrication facility.

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