Art and Design

Art and Design Intent

Alma Park’s Art and Design curriculum begins in EYFS. This foundation in Expressive Art and Design is used to develop our pupils' imagination, creativity, thinking process and their ability to use and manipulate a range of media and materials. Children are given the opportunity to do this in a range of ways including music, songs, dance, experimenting with colours, textures and design. Our intent is to help children to understand and express themselves in a creative, imaginative manner and through exploration. The National Curriculum provides the skill and knowledge progression foundations that are then built on to provide a purposeful progression of knowledge, skills and vocabulary. This ensures that the National Curriculum end points are met.

Our pupils are given a breadth of experience to develop their understanding of themselves as individuals within their community and also as members of a wider global community. Our intent is to fulfil the requirements of the National Curriculum for Art and Design by providing a broad and balanced curriculum and ensuring the progressive development of knowledge and skills. Pupils at Alma Park build on their knowledge and skills in different areas of Art and Design, such as drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques.

The Art and Design curriculum gives pupils life skills to enable them to embrace and utilise new skills and knowledge to ensure that individuality and creativeness flows through everything they do. The children are given opportunities to combine the different strands of the National Curriculum and ensures progression. By teaching Art and Design in discrete lessons and with purposeful links to other curriculum areas, pupils develop their imagination, creativity, resilience, as well as critical thinking and making skills. Children will observe and record both from first-hand experience and from imagination whilst also developing the children’s competence in controlling materials and tools. Children will begin to develop an awareness of the visual and tactile elements including; colour, pattern and texture, line and tone, shape, form and space, alongside fostering enjoyment and appreciation of the visual arts. In addition they will learn how to analyse works using the language of art and design.

As a UNICEF Rights Respecting School Art and Design is delivered in a safe and inspiring environment which nurtures children’s talents, allowing them to thrive so that when they leave Alma Park they are responsible, active citizens. Children will gain an understanding of the importance of the role of Art and Design within the history of human development, of design and innovation, and the creative and cultural industries. Art and Design at Alma Park promotes and encourages sustainability in various ways including: recycling of old materials where possible.

Diversity is embraced by giving opportunities to study a range of important people in Art and Design history which is reflective of our community. At Alma Park Primary School we ensure that Art and Design is fully inclusive to every child. Tools and resources are adapted when necessary to ensure SEND and disadvantaged pupils can access all aspects of the same curriculum.

At Alma Park we are always looking for opportunities to develop our curriculum and this involves seeking enrichment activities for our pupils using local community links, visits to Manchester galleries and where possible inviting working artists into school to talk about and demonstrate their work.


Art and Design Implementation

Learning is the core purpose of our school and is central to everything that happens.

In Nursery and Reception, we follow the Statuary Framework for Early Years Foundation Stage document. This foundation in Expressive Art and Design is based on developing our pupils’ imagination, creativity and thinking. Children in EYFS have the opportunity to do this by using and manipulating a range of media and materials to experiment with colours, textures and design.

At KS1 and KS2, we deliver a rich Art and Design curriculum which meets the requirements of the 2014 National Curriculum for Art. Through knowledge and experience, children explore why art is relevant to their lives and understand their place in the world as creative, confident citizens. At Alma Park pupils explore and revisit these main disciplines of art as they move through school: drawing, painting, printmaking/collage, working in 3 dimensions and also architecture in KS2 only. Key skills in drawing and use of sketchbooks are woven into every unit of learning throughout school. At Alma Park we have access to a collection of resources through our school membership of AccessArt, a leading UK organisation in Art, which supports our existing planning across school, providing teachers with advice, inspiration and guidance in delivering Art.

At Alma Park the National Curriculum has been refined to reflect the communities the children belong to. It is relevant, diverse and engaging. Each unit of work introduces pupils to a variety of artists, designers and craftspeople from the UK and around the world. The children will study the work of famous traditional artists such as Vincent Van Gough and Paul Klee alongside contemporary artists such as Shaheen Ahmed, Lubaina Himid and Charlie French. SEND and social disadvantaged pupils have access to the Art and Design curriculum tailored to their needs with adapted support where needed.

Art and Design is delivered in discreet lessons, with flexibility to form meaningful links to other subjects where possible. Pupils are given opportunities to build on knowledge of artists, generate ideas, explore the formal elements of art and develop their technical skills in each unit of work. Teachers have the option to block the final series of lessons where children use their creative choices and decisions to produce their finished outcome. By teaching Art and Design this way, children are able to focus on the skills and knowledge related to Art and Design. It is therefore easier for them to recall past learning in this subject.

Long term plans, knowledge progression and skills progression documents are the building blocks of the subject. From these, medium term plans are created. Individual lesson plans are created by class teachers, these lesson plans take their objectives from the medium term plans. Lessons are structured to minimise cognitive overload, this is done by ensuring prior knowledge is secure and that lessons are not overloaded with new knowledge. At Alma Park we provide a variety of opportunities for Art and Design learning inside and outside the classroom. Lessons are always practical in nature and encourage experimental and exploratory learning with pupils using sketchbooks to document their ideas.

Children will present all work to their best standard. This fosters pride in their learning. The work will show the clear progression of children’s learning through the Key Stages as they develop their knowledge and understanding, whilst learning a wide range of technical skills in Art. For example, as pupils progress through KS1, they will develop their painting techniques to explore colour, pattern and texture leading on to children refine their painting techniques and skills further in KS2, including their control and use of media and materials. Lessons are teacher assessed against the learning objective and an emphasis is made on assessing the child’s creative journey in their sketchbooks as well as the final outcome. An end of topic evaluation is used to assess what knowledge the children have retained and an opportunity for children to reflect on their own work and the work of others.

The outdoor environment and the local community are considered an opportunity for active learning for all our pupils.

As well as our school based learning, we ensure learning is supported by relevant educational visits and visitors.

Alongside our curriculum provision, we also provide pupils with the opportunity to participate in Art based lunchtime and after school clubs.

Our commitment to being a UNICEF Rights Respecting School is shown through our Art and Design curriculum whereby every child has the right to take part in a wide variety of cultural and artistic activities to help them fully develop their personalities, talents and abilities.

“Celebrating Difference, Achieving Together”