At St. Michael’s Academy, Art and Design is regarded as a vital part of children’s education, and as such is given a significant role in the taught curriculum and the enrichment opportunities offered to our pupils. The art curriculum develops the children’s skills as artists as well as a knowledge of the history of Art through the study of a diverse range of local and global artists. In addition, children learn how to critique their work and that of others. As pupils progress, they gain a deeper understanding of how Art and Design reflects and shapes our history, how it contributes to the culture, creativity and wealth of our world –including an understanding of their own and others cultural heritage- and how it provides a commentary on contemporary issues.
Children develop their knowledge of art with effective teaching and considered sequences of lessons and experiences. Each unit of art has a companion booklet, which explores issues of disciplinary knowledge (how art is viewed and valued), theoretical knowledge (the history of art), as well key language needed. Substantiative knowledge and skills are taught by class teachers supplemented by specialist tuition from an Artist in Residence.
Understanding of the visual elements of art and design (line, tone, texture, colour, pattern, shape, 3D form) are developed throughout our curriculum, along with the practical skills (primarily but not exclusively, drawing, painting and sculpture) which enables children to reach their full creative potential. Children keep both sketch books and portfolios of work where ideas can be explored and evaluated.
We enhance the curriculum via gallery and exhibition visits (Years 2,5 and 6), the exploration of art tails located in the city centre of Birmingham (Years 2 and 6) and the celebration of art produced via an annual Art Show.
Extra-curricular art activities are also offered at Breakfast Club and afterschool club.
Pupils can talk about their learning confidently and express knowledge about the media used with reference to previous learning. Following direct teaching of skills and concepts, pupils are able to make, design and critique work which represents their own ideas.
Key Aspects of our Art Curriculum
- Exploration of paradigms of art
- Self-reflection of learning
- Progression withing taught skills (drawing painting, sculpture, printing)
- Exploration of artists and themes relevant to our community
- An artist in residence teaches all pupils
Paradigms of Art: Definitions
Art that is part of the culture of a group of people, skills and knowledge of which are passed down through generations of master craftsmen to apprentices. Art produced with real, physical media.
This includes artistic work produced during the period extending roughly from the 1860s to the 1970s, usually associated with art in which the traditions of the past have been thrown aside in a spirit of experimentation.
Art which has been produced recently. The artist is often still living. Contemporary are works are often more focused upon a concept or an idea rather than an overly realistic image. It is often culturally diverse and can involve digital imagery.
Art in Early Years
The teaching of art begins in EYFS and is imbedded into their classroom learning experiences. To help children we focus on a few concepts that are particularly important in their future learning in art. Children do not, at this age, need comprehensive or complex knowledge of concepts. Early familiarity with these concepts will allow children to access the curriculum as they develop through the school. In particular there is an emphasis on teaching and learning the key vocabulary to accompany the study of art and design.
Art in Key Stage One
Our whole school approach to learning is reflected in provision for Art and Design. Recall tasks are used to check existing knowledge at the beginning of each art topic, allowing opportunities for key knowledge to be checked and consolidated. New content is introduced in a carefully planned and logical sequence which includes a focus on technical vocabulary which is modelled and taught. Direct teaching takes the form of clear & concise teacher explanations and explicit modelling of skills using the ‘I do, We do, You do’ model. Children are then be provided with the opportunity to implement these working skills independently.
Art in Key Stage Two
KS2 continues to develop the good practice introduced in KS1. Existing knowledge is again checked and consolidated before new content is introduced in a carefully planned and logical sequence. Again, this includes a focus on technical vocabulary, which is modelled and taught.
Direct teaching takes the form of clear & concise teacher explanations and explicit modelling of skills using the ‘I do, We do, You do’ model. Children are then be provided with the opportunity to implement these working skills independently, producing a series of possible outcomes from which they select. End results are self-evaluated identifying successes and improvements.