Art & Design


To develop patient and passionate young artists that are brave enough to take creative risks, demonstrating critical awareness through their personal, social and cultural identity.

Enacting the Vision

Students are taught: 

  • How to use a range of techniques to record observations using sketchbooks as a tool for encouraging a personal and creative visual journey.
  • To focus on improving drawing skills at every opportunity, by using materials and techniques that allow students to become expressive and work in a natural, highly creative, process driven manner.
  • To develop confidence in using techniques which allow students to achieve accuracy and confidence in drawing.
  • To increase their handling of different materials, techniques and processes including, drawing, painting, printmaking, and 3-D.
  • To produce a range of work that is experimental, developmental and achieves high quality outcomes and confident practitioners.
  • To learn about the history of Art, Craft and Design including different periods, styles, and movements from ancient times up to the present day, including and encouraging the referencing of ‘contemporary’ artists/designers that are currently practicing and are using notions and narratives that could encourage the expression of individuality and celebration of social and cultural perspectives and identity.
  • To become confident in talking about their own practice and the practice of others.
  • To consistently recognise that self-evaluation and mistake making is an integral part of the artistic and creative process. As Bob Ross likes to say ‘there are no mistakes only happy accidents.
Year 7

(A4 sketchbook)

In Year 7 students will learn about the Basic Elements of Art and Design through the theme of Portraiture,

Natural Forms, and Still-Life.

Year 8

(A4 sketchbook)

In Year 8 students will learn about Art History (currently being updated as a SOW), Street/Graffit Art, and Wire Art - developing 3-D (line, shape and form) and drawing skills.

Year 9 (GCSE – Year 1)

(A3 sketchbook)

In Year 9 students begin their first year of AQA GCSE Art and Design and will learn about the theme of Portraiture. They will learn to develop their drawing skills and working in different styles and techniques. Students are currently revisiting the Basic Elements of Art and Design in conjunction with this theme, to address any gaps in knowledge that may have been missed due to the ongoing Covid pandemic.

Year 10 (GCSE – Year 2)

(A3 sketchbook)

In Year 10, students are developing a project from a starting point of ‘Portraits, Identity and Me”. This broad based thematic starting point will allow students to develop highly individual responses, that enable them to work as individual practitioners and create unique art, craft and design that is fitting to their own interests, ideas, perspectives, notions, and narratives. Students will be encouraged to find artists/craftsperson’s and designers with the assistance of their teachers, not only using more traditional sources such as websites and books but engaging with more contemporary ways of ‘routing’ out new practitioners and ways of working, including Pinterest, Instagram, Artsy, online gallery/portfolios such as Behance or Illustration X and in the future invitations for visiting artists to run workshops with students.

Year 11 (GCSE – Year 3)

(A3 sketchbooks and/or the continuation of ‘board work’)

In Year 11 students would normally continue to complete ‘Component 1’ – coursework but embark upon ‘Component 2’ as their ‘externally set exam’ in January, developing supporting studies until they take their exam in May/June. With the ongoing Covid pandemic the exam board, “AQA’ have confirmed that students will only need to complete ‘Component 1’. This means they will be able to develop their current coursework, based on the theme of ‘Spirituality’ which was set in Summer 2021. In total students in Year 11 need two completed projects by the end of this academic year (2021-22), May/June for marking. This should include ‘Fragmented Portraits (set previously in Year 10 and their new project theme of ‘Spirituality’).

Year 12

(A3 hardback wring-bound sketchbooks) and creating work outside of the sketchbook (encouraging working at differing scales)

In Year 12 students have embarked upon the first year of their AQA Art and Design A-Level course (A1). They have begun with the theme of Portraits or Still-Life as a thematic starting point. Throughout this year they will continue to develop highly individual and unique artistic responses to their chosen themes (some students have negotiated another theme in partnership/negotiation with their teacher). Students are using differing ways of working and artist/designer references to begin their initial ideas (visual mind map) and artist research.

Year 13

(A3 hardback wring-bound sketchbooks) and creating work outside of the sketchbook (encouraging working at different scales or perhaps combining digital and more traditional techniques)

In Year 13 students have embarked upon their final year of their AQA Art and Design A-Level course (A2). They are continuing to develop their highly individual ‘Personal Investigation’ projects. This is normally considered as ‘Component 1’, and in normal circumstances students would embark upon ‘Component 2-Externally set exam’ in February 2022. Due to the ongoing Covid pandemic, the exam board, AQA have published guidance that A-Level Art and Design students will only need to complete ‘Component 1’ – Personal Investigation. However as is normal practice, ‘Component 1’ contains a written piece of continuous prose, that should relate directly to students’ ongoing practice as young artists/designers/craftsperson’s. This is between 1000-3000 words. Students have been provided with guidance around this in terms of the requirement to produce an ‘Artist’s statement’ of approximately 200-300 words, and an ‘Artist’s proposal’ of approximately 200 -300 words. In conjunction to these, is of course the practical element of the course, and students should recognise that they need to producing work at home as well as in the school/classroom environment to be able to stand the best chance of allowing as much ‘time’ do develop their own arts practice.

Careers in Art

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