Welcome to the wonderfully creative subject of art and design
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. They should also know how art and design both reflect and shape our history, and contribute to the culture, creativity and wealth of our nation.
Leadership and intent of art and design at West Rainton
As the leader of art and design, I am committed to supporting all of our pupils, in their developing creative journey, throughout their primary school years. You can read my full pen profile for my role as art and design lead here:
The aims and objectives of learning art and design in West Rainton Primary School are:
- To enable children to record from first-hand experience and from imagination and to select their own ideas to use in their work;
- To develop creativity and imagination through a range of complex activities;
- To improve the children’s ability to control materials, tools and techniques;
- To increase their critical awareness of the roles and purposes of art and design in different times and cultures;
- To develop increasing confidence in the use of visual and tactile elements and materials;
- To foster an enjoyment and appreciation of the visual arts and a knowledge of artists, craftspeople and designers.
Long term planning for this subject is carried out each academic year during 1:1 discussions with individual class teachers, staff development days and through discussion with the lead governor for art. This whole school approach to planning is particularly important during years where there are mixed age classes, to ensure complete coverage of all objectives and to make sure that topics are not duplicated.
Medium term planning for this subject identifies within each unit or work; learning objectives, art and design activities, assessment opportunities, the vocabulary to be taught and used, safety issues, how information and communications technology and resources should be used.
You can see the full subject policy and curriculum mapping for art and design here:
How art and design is taught at West Rainton Primary School
Children at West Rainton Primary pupils are taught art and design for 60 minutes per week – this is alternated, on a half termly basis, with the teaching of design and technology. In addition to being taught as a discrete subject, art and design is also taught as a cross curricular subject, wherever appropriate across all key stages. All pupils have their own sketchbook in which to plan and develop their art and design activities, before completing their final piece of work.
Here at West Rainton Primary, we currently hold the Artsmark Award at gold level. Artsmark Award is the only creative quality standard for schools which is accredited by Arts Council England. It supports the development and commitment to our arts and cultural education within our school. This prestigious award also serves as an invaluable tool to support the monitoring and evaluation of art and design throughout the school.
As part of our provision on offer, pupils with special educational needs are planned for very carefully in school. This is an important part of the art curriculum, as we strive to ensure that all of our pupils fully understand what they are being taught. This may involve greater explanations about what they learn, and simplified tasks to ensure that pupils with SEND gain as much as they can from the learning on offer. In fact, quite often our pupils with more diverse needs enjoy the freedom and ownership of the more creative subjects. Our provision across the curriculum was highlighted when we were awarded the inclusive ‘Centre of Excellence’ award in late 2020. It is crucial for us that our pupils with SEND make progress, and move on from where they are in their learning journey. This provision may look very different to our other pupils, through differentiation and modification of the curriculum. Our decisions are made in consultation with the SENDCo, Mrs Firth, who advises and supports members of staff with their provision.
Extra Curricular Opportunities
Each year, children in years 3-6 are given the opportunity to develop their creative and communication skills through Arts Award Discover and Explore levels. This is led by the art and design lead, a qualified Arts Award assessor, and is completed both in school (during lunchtimes) and outside of school. At the end of their Arts Award journey, pupils receive a personalised certificate to mark their individual achievements within the subject.
The impact of art and design at West Rainton
Our broad and balanced art and design curriculum stimulates creativity and promotes the ongoing developing imagination and self-expression of all of our pupils. It provides a variety of sensory experiences and a special way of understanding and responding to the world. It enables children to communicate what they see, feel and think through the use of colour, texture, form, pattern and different materials and processes. They learn to make informed judgements and aesthetic and practical decisions. They explore ideas and meanings through the work of artists and designers. Through learning about the roles and functions of art, they can explore the impact it has had on contemporary life and that of different times and cultures. Our ultimate goal, in the teaching of art and design, is to nurture an appreciation and enjoyment of the visual arts in order to enrich our pupils’ lives.
The use of art and design in future careers is limitless! Creativity, imagination and expression are important in every job.
Careers with a specific focus on art and design include:
floral design, graphic design, landscape design, industrial design, interior design, animation, web design, and game design