Learningbreadcrumb separatorArt & Design

Art & Design

Why we teach Art & Design:

At Queen’s Manor Primary School. we believe that high-quality Art lessons will inspire children to think innovatively and develop creative procedural understanding. Our Art curriculum provides children with opportunities to develop their skills using a range of media and materials. Children learn the skills of drawing, painting, printing, collage, textiles, 3D work and digital art and are given the opportunity to explore and evaluate different creative ideas. Children will be introduced to a range of works by different artists and develop knowledge of the styles and vocabulary used by famous artists.

The skills they acquire are applied to their cross-curricular topics, allowing children to use their art skills to reflect on and explore topics in greater depth; for example, by sketching historical artefacts in detail, researching geographical locations to support their work on landscape painting or using art as a medium to express emotion and thought to enhance their personal, social and emotional development. Many areas of art link with mathematical ideas of shape and space; for example when printing repeating patterns and designs and thinking about 3D shapes to support structures. It is paramount that art work be purposeful; be this as a means of expression or to explore the styles of other artists that inspire our own work.

Pupils should be clear what the intended outcomes are and have a means to measure their own work against this.  In Art, children are expected to be reflective and evaluate their work, thinking about how they can make changes and keep improving. This should be meaningful and continuous throughout the process, with evidence of age-related verbal and written refection.  Children are encouraged to take risks and experiment and then reflect on why some ideas and techniques are successful or not for a particular project.

What our curriculum looks like:

The United Curriculum for Art & Design provides all pupils, regardless of their background, with:

  • Entitlement: Regardless of their starting point, the curriculum allows pupils to produce creative work, to explore ideas and develop the confidence to excel in a broad range of artistic techniques. All pupils will learn about artists and cultures from across history and across the world.  
  • Coherence: Taking the National Curriculum as its starting point, the curriculum is sequenced from Early Years to Key Stage 3 and beyond so that pupils gradually develop and build their practical knowledge, including the formal elements, the use of a range of materials in two and three dimensions, and the techniques required to produce artwork. Theoretical and disciplinary knowledge is sequenced so that pupils build a deeper understanding across key stages.
  • Mastery: All pupils will be explicitly taught about the formal elements – colour, form, line, pattern, shape, texture and tone – and other aspects of art knowledge in small steps. Pupils will revisit, develop and apply their skills with increasing technical proficiency.
  • Adaptability: Our art curriculum is designed to give teachers flexibility, allowing them to select and adapt resources for their specific context. Schools are encouraged to bring it to life for their pupils by supplementing it with artists from their local area. In Key Stage 3, schools should select outcomes, materials and skills focus for units based on local context and teacher expertise.
  • Representation: The Art curriculum provides children with the opportunity to explore historical and contemporary artists and artworks, who represent their own and others’ cultures, values and beliefs. We will explore the context in which the art was produced, and consider the full breadth of human experience and expression through art. 
  • Education with Character: We aim to build and maintain pupils’ confidence in their ability as artists to create. The curriculum will develop aspects of character such as resilience, confidence and risk taking. Through the curriculum, pupils are given opportunities to share, reflect and learn about each other’s experiences whilst recognising the things we have in common. 

How we teach Art & Design:

Art is taught in 6-lesson units, once a term (Art alternates with D&T).

The United Curriculum is sequenced so that meaningful links are made between subjects, and the order of units allows these connections to be made. For example, in Year 3 Spring pupils have the opportunity to create individual clay tiles which form part of collaborative storyboard illustrating a fairy tale. This unit links explicitly with the English curriculum unit Fairy Tale Crimes, in which pupils consider alternative readings of fairy tale characters and their intentions. 

Queen’s Manor Primary School as adapted the curriculum by considering the context of our pupils and the community.

Teachers are provided with an additional three planning days per year in addition to their PPA, to plan their curriculum.

As part of this planning process, teachers plan the following: 

  • A knowledge organiser which outlines knowledge (including vocabulary) all children must master
  • A cycle of lessons for each subject, which carefully plans for progression and depth
  • A low stakes quiz which is tested regularly to support learners’ ability to block learning and increase space in the working memory
  • Challenge questions for pupils to apply their learning in a philosophical/open manner
  • Trips and visiting experts who will enhance the learning experience
  • Children will sketch and explore medias and their uses in a sketchbook which will progress through their school years, allowing children to see their own progression and reflect on their prior work and learning.
  • A means to display and celebrate the pupils’ artwork in their class.

How we measure Art & Design:

Our Art & Design curriculum is high quality, well thought out and is planned to demonstrate progression. If children are keeping up with the curriculum, they are deemed to be making good or better progress. In addition, we measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:  

  • A reflection on standards achieved against the planned outcomes
  • Opportunities for work to be displayed beyond the classroom such as on corridors or special show casing events and exhibitions, where work can be shared with a wider audience including children from other year groups and parents.
  • Pupil discussions about their learning; which includes discussion of their thoughts, ideas, processing and evaluations of work.

Our Art curriculum is also planned in a way that promotes cultural capital. All children will learn the same skills and have the opportunity to realise their talents and develop their character through self-expression. Children will be exposed to a wide range of experiences that will enhance their skills development and provide them with knowledge about a wider range of culture. This will be delivered through guest speakers from local artists, visits to local art galleries and visits to other areas within our community and around our community to explore how art is embodied throughout different institutions.

The careful sequencing of the curriculum – and how concepts are gradually built over time – is the progression model. If pupils are keeping up with the curriculum, they are making progress. Formative assessment is prioritised and is focused on whether pupils are keeping up with the curriculum.

In general, this is done through:

  • Unless it is unavoidable, pupils use the same sketchbook over multiple years, until it is complete. Sketchbooks contain a record of pupils’ progress over a significant period of time. Talking to pupils about their sketchbooks allows us to assess how much of the curriculum content is secure. These conversations are used to determine whether pupils have a good understanding of the vertical concepts (practical knowledge), and if they can link recently taught content to learning from previous units.
  • Formative assessment in lessons
  • There are opportunities for formative assessment in the lessons, and teachers continually adapt their lesson delivery to address misconceptions and ensure that pupils are keeping up with the content.
  • Low-stakes summative assessment
  • We also use low-stakes quizzes at the end of the unit to assess whether pupils have learned the core knowledge for that unit. These are also used formatively, and teachers plan to fill gaps and address misconceptions before moving on.

How you can help your child at home?

EYFS and Key Stage 1
  • Encourage your child to be creative, this could be by doing junk modelling projects or repurposing old belongings in an imaginative way
  • Develop areas such as fine motor skills, creativity, planning, concentration, and perseverance
  • Display your child’s artwork
Key Stage 2
  • Visit art galleries or local spaces and explore the art and architecture
  • Gather any materials that could be used for an art project
  • Read books about art such as:
    • Linnea in Monet’s Garden by Cristina Bjork
    • Story Painter: The Life of Jacob Lawrence by John Duggleby
    • Talking to Faith Ringgold by Faith Ringgold, Linda Freeman and Nancy Roucher.

United Learning comprises: United Learning Ltd (Registered in England No: 00018582. Charity No. 313999) UCST (Registered in England No: 2780748. Charity No. 1016538) and ULT (Registered in England No. 4439859. An Exempt Charity). Companies limited by guarantee.
Registered address: United Learning, Worldwide House, Thorpe Wood, Peterborough, PE3 6SB.

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