Art

  • The Art Department offers an imaginative, expressive and personalised Art curriculum for both Key Stages.

    At all stages of the art curriculum, we feel that it is essential to place risk taking and experimentation at the heart of creative learning. There is great diversity in the outcomes produced by students and we encourage independent research and enquiry throughout the key stages, along with the development of key skills.

    The work of artists and designers is an integral part of our lives, from the buildings we live, work and play in, to the furniture we sit on, the clothes we wear, and the cars we drive, to the packaged consumer goods in the supermarket and the choice of paintings and prints we choose to adorn our homes and workplace.

    We are surrounded by the rich influence of Art in everyday life without even venturing into an art gallery.
    Art allows pupils to express themselves through creative processes that excites the imagination and builds self-esteem. Skills taught in art can enhance other curriculum areas.

    Art provides creative thought processes for problem solving and exploration while technical skills develop control of fine motor skills also encouraging respect for materials and equipment.

    Fundamentally, art is important in pupil’s development because it enriches their lives and provides the platform for the essential development and well-being of children.

  • Art is compulsory at KS3. Each class has 2 hours of Art a fortnight, after this Art becomes optional at GCSE in Years 10 and 11. Many of these students often continue their Art studies in Further Education. Courses offered at KS4 include GCSE Fine Art, GCSE Photography and GCSE Graphic Design.

    In Year 7 pupils complete a baseline assessment. This tests their basic drawing skills and understanding of artistic vocabulary. This creates a platform level which is used to set a target for the end of Year 9.

    The pupils complete one project each term. Every topic is designed to enhance a variety of skills, allowing pupils to experiment with lots of materials and techniques. At the end of each project pupils produce a final piece.

    Year 7 projects:

    • Colour Theory
    • Still Life
    • All About Me
    • Pop Art

    Year 8 projects:

    • Supper Heroes
    • Portraits
    • Digital Drawing

    Year 9 projects:

    • Perspective
    • Exam Questions
    • Music

    Independent Learning Tasks

    Learning tasks are regularly set each term. Pupils are given a sketch book at the beginning of each academic year. They should complete their tasks in this book. If that is lost, pupils will have to replace them.

    Pupils have access to the Art rooms at lunchtime should they wish to use any materials and equipment not available at home.

  • If pupils decide to choose Art as one of their GCSE options they must have passion for the subject and be prepared to work hard on exciting and innovative projects.

    The course is divided into two units of coursework (portfolio of work) and one externally set task. The first unit of coursework is competed in year 10. In year 11 pupils complete a mock examination, and then complete an externally set task.

    Course Content

    Coursework is worth 60% of pupils overall GCSE Art grade

    The GCSE Art course content:

    • Drawing from direct observation, photography, trips to galleries and other educational visits
    • Experimenting with different materials and techniques e.g. wax batik, silk painting, ceramics, mixed media, collage, paint, oil pastels, soft pastels, acrylics, sculpture and model making etc.
    • Research of an Artist, Art movement or a culture.
    • All pupils produce a final piece as a culmination of ideas, research and personal journey.

    During the two years of the course students will improve the quality of their drawing and colour work as well as becoming more confident with the use of new techniques.

    Externally set task

    The Externally Set task is worth 40% of the pupils overall GCSE grade.

    Pupils are required to answer one question from an examination paper and interpret it through one of their chosen areas of study.

    They have 10 weeks to prepare for this, and then complete a 10 hour exam over two days.

    Forms of Assessment

    All classwork and homework is marked using AQA guidelines and grade boundaries. The grades and constructive feedback are recorded in pupils marking booklets.

    Independent Learning Tasks

    Learning tasks are regularly set throughout each term. Pupils are given a sketch book at the beginning of each academic year. They should complete their tasks in this book. If that is lost, pupils will have to replace them.

    Pupils studying Photography or Graphics will be working fully digitally and will record their progress in the form of a PowerPoint presentation. Students working digitally have access to professional design equipment including Cannon DSLR cameras and Adobe cloud creative suite.

    Pupils have access to the Art rooms at lunchtime should they wish to use any materials and equipment not available at home.

    Pupils can also use Art folders to transport their work to and from school. These folders can be bought or borrowed from the department.

    How can parents/carers help?

    • Parents can help their children by ensuring that homework tasks are given concentration and not left to the last minute.
    • Discuss homework tasks together, offer ideas, support, encouragement and praise to build confidence
    • Pupils have access to the Art rooms at lunchtime should they wish to use any materials and equipment not available at home
    • Gallery visits – local and national – are an excellent way to develop insights into the world of Art and Design as well as helping to generate ideas. Below are some links to some suggested galleries, all of which are free entry.

    The Baltic Art Gallery (Newcastle)
    MIMA Modern Art Gallery (Middlesbrough)
    Laing Art Gallery (Newcastle)
    Tate Art Gallery (London)

    Art and Design: Fine Art (AQA)

    Pupils should produce practical and critical/contextual work in one or more areas including drawing and painting, mixed media, sculpture, land art, installation, printmaking, lens-based and/or light-based media: film, television, animation, video and photography. Pupils are required to submit a substantial portfolio of coursework including evidence of research and practical outcomes. Fine Art can lead to jobs such as: Illustrator, Teacher, Art Therapist, Museum Curator, Exhibition Designer or Community Artist.

    Art and Design: Graphics (AQA)

    Pupils should produce practical and critical/ contextual work in one or more areas including illustration, advertising, packaging design, design for print, communication graphics, computer graphics, multimedia, web design, lens-based and/or light-based media: film, animation, video and photography. Pupils are required to submit a substantial portfolio of coursework including evidence of research and practical outcomes. Graphics can lead to jobs in: illustration, Album Design, Magazine Editing, Fashion, Comic Books, Animation, Set Design or Infographic Design.

    Art and Design: Photography (AQA)

    Pupils should produce practical and critical/contextual work in one or more areas including theme-based photography (portrait, landscape, still-life and reportage), documentary photography, photo- journalism, narrative photography, experimental imagery, photographic installation, new media practice, video, television and film.

    Pupils are required to submit a substantial portfolio of coursework including evidence of research and practical outcomes. Photography can lead to jobs in: Photo-journalism, Film and TV, Art Photography, Forensic Photography, Documentary Photography, Animation, Sport Photography or Teaching.