Art & D.T.
Everyone at Bournebrook Church of England School knows just how important Art and Design Technology (DT) are as an essential part of a child’s education and personal development. We intend to help our children achieve a good level of creative growth through a purposeful and personalised curriculum, alongside the many enrichment opportunities offered to pupils whilst they are with us. We believe Art and DT serve to develop children’s critical thinking and curiosity, as well as build an understanding of their own and others’ cultural heritages through the study of a diverse range of artists and craftspeople. So, as a school, our aim is to enable pupils to develop their understanding of the visual literacy of Art and DT through a programme of progressive skills and experiences. We will offer them opportunities to develop understanding of the practical, visual and theoretical elements of Art and DT, so that they will be able to reach their full artistic and problem solving potential, and experience pride in their outcomes.
The skills and knowledge that children will be taught throughout each art topic are mapped across each year group within a three year curriculum cycle for Foundation Stage, Lower School and Upper School. These are both progressive and personalised to the preferences and unique nature of our school, in line with the 2014 National Curriculum expectations for these subjects. Foundation stage (Nursery and Reception) teach Expressive Arts and Design in line with the EYFS curriculum. This learning is skills-based and led by the interests and needs of the children, which leads into the 3 year cycle followed by the rest of the school. The emphasis for all is on knowledge to be learnt and the skills to acquire this understanding, which ensures that children appreciate the context of Art or DT, as well as the artists or craftspeople that they are learning about and being inspired by. The curriculum is largely planned and delivered through cross curricular links, enabling our children to develop a deeper and more meaningful knowledge base.
Each unit of work builds on prior skills and knowledge so that new knowledge develops from a good ‘foundation’ in order to promote long term learning. Pupils will use sketchbooks and DT books, which move with them throughout the school, to facilitate reference to earlier topics. Through this, both staff and children can understand how they are individually developing their skills and knowledge in these areas.
Within all lessons, teachers plan a sequence of progressive learning in line with the detailed and unique curriculum maps we use for Art and DT at Bournebrook, and this is reinforced through quality teaching and a wide variety of resources and materials. The knowledge and skills expectations for each year group are used to both plan and assess outcomes, and form the age related expectations for the year group. These expectations may also be used to support pupils with Special Educational needs or those who are working at greater depth – thus enabling best outcomes for all. During (and at the end of) a unit of work, children’s work may be showcased and celebrated through display or assembly, reflecting the children’s sense of pride and achievement in their creative work and highlighting the positive status placed on these subjects.
In addition to the planned curriculum, enrichment opportunities occur throughout the academic year. Some of these are secular and some are in line with key social or cultural events and festivals. We often plan themed days or whole-school projects, where the arts (including technology) form a significant part of the children’s experience. The school’s unique buildings and location are also utilised, with opportunities for Art and DT learning outside of the classroom.
By the end of their time in Bournebrook, the Art and DT curriculums will have enabled pupils to develop high quality skills and knowledge in line with their year group or individual needs. They will have been encouraged to be more curious about the world around them, and have an appreciation of the ‘creatives’ who impact our lives. They will have a greater understanding about what they like and dislike regarding art and design, and will move onto their next schools with confidence to think critically and develop solutions to a need or creative desire.
Evidence of this will be seen many ways: in their Sketchbooks (which will be regularly monitored and moderated); in finished artwork or products; in images or photographs of work; and through pupil self-evaluations. We will utilise shared discussion between pupils and members of staff alongside formalised evidence within planning, assessments, and annual reports. This builds a holistic representation of the skills learnt in lessons, these skills having enhanced the learning and development of all pupils, including those with Special Educational needs or those who are more able in Art and DT.