Art and design is an essential part of the primary curriculum. Art allows the child to develop their imagination and creativity, to make connections through their inventive minds and gives children the skills to record their imagination and ideas.
Art also encourages expression and visual thinking, which in turn helps children learn other subjects.
Children can develop their observational skills through art and design, which helps children become better observers to the world around them.
At Seven Hills school, the youngest children in Nursery are given access to mark making resources where they can explore colour and line and learn how they can be changed. They are encouraged to express feelings through their art and mark making and capture experiences and responses with a wide range of media. This is further developed in Reception class, where children begin to create simple representations of events, people and objects, choosing particular colours and textures for their purpose.
In year 1 the children begin to develop a wide range of art and design techniques in using colour, pattern, texture, line, shape, form and space, study the work of a range of artists, craft makers and designers, describing the differences and similarities between different practices and disciplines, and making links to their own work. ( e.g Andy Goldsworthy) and begin to use drawing, painting and sculpture to develop and share their ideas, experiences and imagination.
These experiences are built upon in year 2, where children study the work of L.S Lowry and create their own Lowry style paintings and explore different media by creating cave drawings using chalk, water colours and poster paint.
In year 2 children extend their art knowledge by creating animal print pictures using peer assessment to improve observation and technical skills and further develop painting skills by introducing textures. They then use their skills and knowledge of the characteristics of different media to produce a piece of art to represent the Great Fire of London.
In year 3 the children develop sketching with a range of pencils, portrait drawing skills, collaging and pastel work. Through the topic of the Mayans, the children are also able to explore the effect of painting on different surfaces, such as acetate.
Using previous knowledge of techniques, in year 4 the children continue to develop their drawing skills through sketches of Morley buildings, silhouettes and illustrations. They also explore art from other cultures and link historical knowledge with art through weaving, collage and making a peg doll.
Furthering their knowledge of art in other cultures, the children in year 4 explore techniques and artists work from Ancient Greece, Japan and South America, where they study the art work of Romero Britto and Beatriz Milhazes. In this year, the children are encouraged to spend time reflecting on their art and improving aspects of it, as well as taking a multi media approach to a lot of their application.
Building on their art learning in year 5, year 6 record their observations and use them to review and revisit ideas e.g. recreating a piece of art inspired by Ancient Rome, and use a wider range of art and design techniques including drawing, painting and sculpture with a range of materials e.g. Roman mosaics, pottery, models of the Colosseum.
As the children progress through school, art experiences are built upon so the children can make decisions about their approach to different challenges. Drawing skills are used to support many other subjects as illustrations etc, and as such are very important aspects of how the children record their knowledge visually, so these skills are valued throughout the curriculum.