Art and Design Curriculum
The Art and Design department at The Observatory School prides itself on providing our pupils with a wide range of opportunities within and beyond the curriculum in a creative and inspiring environment.
We aim to provide pupils’ with a wide range of art experiences which are appropriate to their needs and delivered through programmes of study which address the essential elements of creative activity. Our Art curriculum provides pupils with opportunities to develop their skills using a range of media and materials. Pupils learn the skills of drawing, painting, printing, collage, textiles, 3D work and digital art and are given the opportunity to explore and evaluate different creative ideas. Pupils will be introduced to a range of works and develop knowledge of the styles and vocabulary used by famous artists. The skills they acquire are applied to their cross-curricular topics, allowing pupils to use their art skills to reflect on and explore topics in greater depth; for example, by sketching historical artefacts in detail, researching geographical locations to support their work on landscape painting or using art as a medium to express emotion and thought to enhance their personal, social and emotional development. Many areas of art link with mathematical ideas of shape and space; for example when printing repeating patterns and designs and thinking about 3D shapes to support structures. It is paramount that artwork be purposeful; be this as a means of expression or to explore the styles of other artists that inspire our own work. Pupils should be clear what the intended outcomes are and have the means to measure their own work against this.
In Art, pupils are expected to be reflective and evaluate their work, thinking about how they can make changes and keep improving. This should be meaningful and continuous throughout the process, with evidence of age-related verbal and written reflection. Pupils are encouraged to take risks and experiment and then reflect on why some ideas and techniques are successful or not for a particular project.
Art is taught across all base classes at The Observatory School. Teachers expect pupils to:
Our Art Curriculum is high quality, well thought out and is planned to demonstrate progression. If pupils are keeping up with the curriculum, they are deemed to be making good or better progress. In addition, we measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:
WJEC GCSE Art and Design.
Art is an essential area of study for a number of careers as diverse as architecture or film and any form of design from fashion to aeronautics to every day household product design. Art GCSE is highly sort after by employers within all creative industries.
- Pupils have the opportunity to work on projects with local galleries, and even held their own exhibition at the Open Eye Gallery in Liverpool. Pupils worked closely with artists and photographers who discussed their careers and backgrounds in detail with them.
- The department maintains close links with past pupils who have studied Art and Design after they have left us. Many of our pupils have gone on to study Art and Design after school, and are invited back to talk about their experiences on a Art and Design Course.
- Pupils have visits linked to Careers, for example pupils have visited a local fashion designers. They looked at the design process before the making of clothing.
- Pupils have worked with various Artists and Designers, who have come in and given workshops. A good example of this is when pupils worked on a brief set by Mersey Rail to design a sculpture for Bidston Train Station. Pupils worked with an artist to design a new sculpture.