Art and Design


The national curriculum for art and design aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences
  • become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques
  • evaluate and analyse creative works using the language of art, craft and design
  • know about great artists, craft makers and designers, and understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms.

At Hook Junior School, we teach to the National Curriculum expectations, but also aim to inspire children to develop a passion for art and design and recognise how it can develop their creativity and imagination by building on their knowledge, skills and understanding of materials and processes.

Art, craft and design embody some of the highest forms of human creativity. A high-quality art and design education should engage, inspire and challenge pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own works of art, craft and design. As pupils progress, they should be able to think critically and develop a more rigorous understanding of art and design.

We want all children to achieve within art and design and to know how art and design both reflect and shape history, and contribute to the culture, creativity and wealth of both our nation and others. We are committed to ensuring that all children are able to use their experiences to help them to develop their understanding of the diverse roles and functions of art and design in the locality and in the wider world.

Art and Design Curriculum Implementation

The knowledge and skills that pupils will develop throughout each art unit are mapped across each year group and throughout the school to ensure the skills and knowledge taught are progressive across the key stage. The emphasis on knowledge ensures that children understand the context of the artwork, as well as the artists that they are learning about and being inspired by. This enables links to other curriculum areas, with children developing a knowledge of individual artists as well as individual works and art movements.

The disciplinary knowledge allows pupils to develop creativity and imagination as well as developing mastery in the four key processes of art: drawing, painting, sculpture and textiles.

Lessons are taught weekly on a half-termly basis in order to maintain continuity and to allow children to develop and revisit learnt skills. Each unit focuses on at least one of the main elements of art to allow children to learn about and explore each element in depth (e.g. colour, shape, tone). Each lesson then begins with a recap of prior knowledge, for example, colour theory is re-visited during a painting unit. A range of existing pieces of art are studied, along with the artists. Sketches are made from existing works, necessary skills are developed, and a final piece is composed, whereby children apply the skills and knowledge taught in an original way. Evaluation of artwork is a strong focus within our art curriculum and children are given ample time to reflect on the strengths of their work and on their areas of improvement. All artwork is documented in sketchbooks. Children are provided with timely and constructive feedback and suggestions for next steps, so that they can further improve their work and to ensure skills are being developed and progress made.

Additionally, across the year, a local artist works alongside children within their art units to inspire, model and give feedback. There is also an annual workshop led by the artist for all children across the school to build on their knowledge in art and to provide opportunities to express their ideas creatively within other aspects of the curriculum: themes on anti-bullying and Black History have produced high quality outcomes.

The school’s high-quality art curriculum is supported through the availability of a wide range of quality resources, which are used to support children’s knowledge and use of different media, e.g. pencil, charcoal, paint, clay. In addition to our curriculum provision for art and design, we also provide all pupils with the opportunity to participate in art-based extra-curricular clubs. Pupils are consulted termly about which clubs they would like to be offered.

Children are taught art and design together in mixed ability classes to support all children to achieve. The expectation is that most pupils will move through the school’s programme of study at broadly the same pace. However, teachers use their assessments to decide when it is appropriate for children in their class to progress. Scaffold and additional support are provided for children who may be struggling to grasp a concept, which may include differentiated work or additional or alternative resources.

Children are also challenged to think more deeply about the concepts and apply them to unfamiliar contexts. This supports children to develop their critical thinking skills, with children of all abilities challenged to reason and think deeply about concepts related to art and design.

Please see the overview below which outlines the knowledge and understanding within art and design for each individual year group.

Art and Design Curriculum Impact

Formative assessment in art and design takes place during each lesson and oral feedback is provided to pupils. Misconceptions are addressed and staff use the next lesson to ensure that children have the opportunity to work through their misconceptions and continue to apply the knowledge learnt.

Planning is informed by assessment in order to enable all children to progress. Children’s understanding of topic-linked vocabulary is assessed before and after units are taught – this is often the focus for pupil conferencing, so that the impact of the curriculum can be measured. Year teams will discuss and review learning outcomes together in order to agree the next steps for children – each teacher will personalise learning for their own pupils.

Teachers make a summative assessment at the end of each term. The data gathered is used to inform planning and next steps. Moderation, within and between schools, is undertaken so that a dialogue can exist between teachers and to ensure that judgements about pupils’ work are consistent with agreed standards.

The teaching of art and design is monitored regularly, at least termly, through data, sketchbook and planning monitoring or peer observations. This information is used to identify strengths and areas for development. An action plan is drawn to support with any areas for development.

Displays and framed artwork around the school reflect the priority for art and children’s sense of pride; this is also demonstrated by creative outcomes across the wider curriculum. The school environment celebrates children’s achievements in art and demonstrates the subject’s high profile in the school.

These factors ensure that we are able to maintain high standards in art and design. Our art curriculum contributes to children’s personal development in creativity, independence, judgement and self-reflection. Children progress well and are equipped not only with a rigorous understanding of the content covered, but also an awareness of how art can enrich lives, encourage appreciation for diverse cultures and traditions, build communities and cultivate cultural assets.