Our Key Stage 3 curriculum is based on the concept of introducing key skills in Year 7, developing these in Year 8, to being able to extend them in Year 9. Students will have had varied experiences of Art when they join in Year 7, and therefore, schemes of work are devised so that all students can make progress whilst also being challenged, regardless of their initial starting point. By the end of Year 7, students will have had the opportunity to explore different media and processes, and will have been introduced to some of the key concepts within this subject. They will learn how to critically analyse their own and artists’ work using subject-specific language, develop skills in using a range of media and processes, and begin to work with increasing independence to explore personal ideas and create work that is meaningful to them. As students move through Years 8 and 9, creativity, competence and critical analysis skills continue to be developed and extended through broad, engaging topics.
Those students choosing Art at GCSE follow the AQA course, which has a large coursework component and a practical exam with an extended preparatory period. There are four assessment criteria that can be summarised as: develop, refine, experiment, and present. Students will already be familiar with these concepts as Key Stage 3 projects are based on the same framework. At the beginning of the GCSE course, we will spend time refining practical skills, particularly focusing on observation and recording. Students will go on to develop two coursework projects throughout Year 10 and into Year 11, with students given increasing independence to develop their own ideas and work with media of their choice. All year groups are able to participate in educational trips, providing opportunities to experience and make art outside of a classroom setting. Years 11, 12 and 13 can also take part in an international trip to build on these experiences.
Studying Art at A Level, assessed through OCR, allows students to develop more sophisticated knowledge and understanding. A foundation studies approach in Year 12 challenges and questions how and why we make art. It introduces new ways of working, helping students to develop their own visual language and express their passions, ideas and viewpoints through a rigorous and in-depth creative process. Skills are refined and independence encouraged as personalised ideas are taken forward into Year 13, reflecting and supporting individual interests, whether they lie within the Arts or further afield.