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Art & Design

‚ÄčArt and design

The Art curriculum area is a thriving place of creativity, where all year groups explore and learn techniques and processes and use new media.  We aim to help and encourage students of all levels to discover their talents and maximise their potential. 

There are three fully equipped Art rooms in addition to a ceramics area, dark room and designated Sixth Form studio space.  

Art has three full-time members of staff, all of whom have areas of specialism.  This enables us to share knowledge and skills with one another and pass this on to the students.  In addition, we have a full time Technician who assists in the running of the curriculum area and in lessons: aiding and encouraging students with their work.

Key Stage 3

In Years 7 and 8 students work on the Visual and Performing Arts Carousel. Over the course of these two years students study and develop their skills in drawing, painting, ceramics, printing, collage and colour theory through a range of topics.

Unit 1: Still life and the formal elements

  • Unit 2: Self Portraits
  • Unit 3: Sea Creatures
  • Unit 4: Natural Forms
  • Unit 5: Typography

Students are given feedback on their work in their sketchbooks as well as being formally assessed twice in each project. Assessment Feedback Books track students’ progress throughout the two years.

In Year 9 students are selected to follow an introductory course to GCSE Art and Design. Three projects are studied allowing students to become familiar with the Assessment Objectives used at GCSE. Students work in sketchbooks as well as exploring different types of drawing, painting, printing, ceramics and construction. Work produced in Year 9 may be submitted as part of their GCSE portfolio.


GCSE Art and Design covers the full breadth of the art spectrum of skills. Students study 3 topics within Unit 1. The main emphasis of this is to develop a confident skills base through exploring drawing, painting, printing, sculpture, ceramics, textiles and photography. Students complete homework on a weekly basis as part of the course, this encourages students to develop their ability to work independently.

Unit 1a: Natural forms

Unit 1b: Food

Unit 1c: Exam paper title such as ‘Apart and/or Together’. This project culminates with a 10 hour Mock Exam. This allows students to gain a full understanding of the exam set up and timings in readiness for Unit 2.

Unit 2 is a compulsory unit set by the exam board. Students are introduced to a range of ideas based around a single theme. Visual examples are given to provide inspiration. Students are expected to work independently for 10 weeks prior to completing a 10 hour timed test in which a final piece for the project is produced. Throughout GCSE students are expected to stay after school one evening a fortnight to make full use of the Art Department facilities.

Exam Board - Pearson Edexcel

Coursework - 60%            

Exam - 40%


At KS5 students start a two year linear A Level course. The coursework is 50% and the exam is  50%. Students also complete a 3000 word essay within unit 1 which weighs at 12%.

Exam Board - Pearson Edexcel

Coursework - A Level Unit 1 50%
Exam -            A Level Unit 2 50%


In addition to curriculum content, students will have the opportunity to engage with professional artists, attend gallery trips and study days at Brunel University, join in with the Royal Academy of Art Outreach programme, enter competitions, join the animation or ceramics club and help paint the set for the school play.