Art – Key Stage 3

In Key Stage 3 pupils develop an understanding of the relevance of Art, Craft and Design in the world today and relate their studies to the wide range of careers in the creative industries. Pupils are introduced to a variety of materials, techniques and processes in art, textiles and 3D design. They develop transferable skills such as exploring their own creative ideas, problem solving and using investigation skills to analyse their work and that of other artists. We provide an environment where pupils can find the creative process enjoyable and rewarding.

During Year 7 pupils follow a foundation skills project covering observational drawing, idea development, painting skills, the colour wheel and the impact of Art and Design in the modern world. Following this pupils explore pattern and colour whilst investigating South American culture, as well as a project based on portraiture.

In Year 8 pupils explore the Pop Art movement and facial proportions – they use this inspiration to create a pencil case. Year 8 pupils then focus on a project based on Surrealism and one further project using contextual studies to explore new materials.

The first project for Year 9 explores the impact of Steampunk on film making, media communication and the design of consumer objects, with pupils creating a Steampunk mask. Following this pupils investigate the theme of ‘War and Conflict in art’. Pupils respond to artist stimuli by designing an installation inspired by The Tate Tanks.

Programme of study

Our aim is that pupils will gain a sound knowledge and understanding of the formal elements including: line, tone, shape, form, colour, patterns and textures.

At Key Stage 3 Schemes of Work are designed to gradually introduce pupils to the requirements for the subject at GCSE level. Therefore pupils develop their learning according to four main areas which reflects GCSE criteria: developing ideas, experimenting with materials, recording ideas and creating a final outcome. All Key Stage 3 classes are taught in mixed ability groups.

The techniques studied include: drawing and painting, printmaking, pen and wash, collage, mixed media, textiles and working in 3D. The use of ICT includes: digital photography, image manipulation and Internet research skills.

The setting arrangements and amount of curriculum time

All pupils have four lessons over two weeks lasting sixty minutes.

Assessment and Marking criteria

We use feedback forms in sketchbooks for pupils to regularly peer and self-assess. Work is regularly marked, with each project assessed using the school criteria (A* – E). Pupils are regularly given comments on how they can improve. Pupils are expected to respond to these comments and document how they might have made improvements following this, which allows for pupils to reflect continuously on their progress.

Private Study

Pupils are set Private Study once a fortnight or given an extended project to complete. Private Study is marked as above. We use the school’s system called ‘Show My Homework’ to show deadlines and details, as provided in class.

Extra-curricular opportunities

The Art department offers an Art club for KS3. This is an opportunity for pupils to use the department’s resources, books, computers, paints etc based on a topic or get involved with an Art Department Project.

Key Stage 4

We currently run the Edexcel unendorsed Art, Craft and Design course, as well as the WJEC Art Textiles and WJEC Art 3D Design courses. In all three courses pupils learn a range of different disciplines and skills including drawing, painting, photography, photoshop, mixed media, printmaking, contextual studies and sculpture as well as textiles or 3D specific skills and processes. As soon as pupils start Year 10 they are building their coursework portfolio which counts as 60% of their final GCSE grade – the remaining 40% is based on the externally set assignment which takes place at the end of Year 11. Pupils are assessed in both coursework and the externally set assignment based on their ability in four areas: developing ideas; refining and experimenting with materials processes and ideas; recording ideas (as drawings or photoshoots, for example) and presentation of a final piece linked to their artist research and idea development. All four areas have equal weighting.

There are four units in the course, with the final unit being the exam (or ‘externally set assignment). In Year 10 pupils build their skills and confidence with a project based on the theme of Structures. This is followed by a project on creating a prototype toy which ends in a 3D sculpture. At the end of Year 10 pupils begin their Final Coursework Project which is the final stage of their coursework. The exam, supplied by the exam board in February of Year 11, allows 10 weeks for pupils to develop ideas, experiment and record. The final piece for this is created over two days in exam conditions.

We hold KS4 Coursework Workshops every other week. We have a daily open door policy with regards to helping pupils with their art work. We encourage pupils to visit galleries and exhibitions whenever possible and take pupils on gallery visits. This enables pupils to gain a better understanding of art and artists’ work.

Key Stage 5

At A level students have follow a linear course – either AQA Art and Design course, the WJEC Art Textiles course or the WJEC Art 3D Design course.

In Year 12 students focus on developing and building skills through a series of workshops focussing on painting, mixed media, sculpture and film making. They are introduced to a variety of experiences that explore a range of two-dimensional and / or three dimensional media, processes and techniques.  Students explore the use of drawing for different purposes, using a variety of methods and media on a variety of scales. Students use sketchbooks and journals to underpin their work where appropriate.

Students explore relevant images, artefacts and resources relating to a range of art, craft and design, from the past and from recent times. Their responses to these examples are shown through practical and critical activities that demonstrate an understanding of different styles, genres and traditions. Students should be aware of the importance of process as well as product.

Across Year 12 and Year 13 the Coursework portfolio is worth 60% of the grade and the externally set assignment is 40%. The final coursework assignment starts after Easter of Year 12 and ends in February of Year 13 when the externally set assignment begins. The course is designed to prepare students for art based careers, with many students being accepted on Foundation Art courses as well as a wide range of other art based degree courses such as engineering, fashion and architecture, film, photography as well as fine art.