We believe that if we open our hearts and minds to the possibilities each and every one of us, no matter how small, can make a difference in our school and beyond.  The parable of the Mustard seed teaches us that God can do a lot with a little!  At Newdigate school we passionately believe that every child has a unique, inner creativity.  Through creative experiences, all of your young children will learn and grow as artists and be capable of finding their inner creative voice, which will be encouraged and celebrated. 

How will the children learn and grow in Art?

We offer an arts curriculum where children begin to experience and develop an understanding of the elements of art and the skills and techniques that can be used.  Where creativity and imagination will be stimulated and challenged.  We intend to develop confidence and self-esteem in both the design and production of creative work, where processes as well as end products are celebrated.  

We will allow children time to explore and experiment to play with materials, processes and ideas.   Experimentation always precedes work that is focused on producing a more finished outcome.  We intend to encourage our children to explore relationships between their own 'making' practice and their appreciation of knowledge of established works or art, craft and design.  Through skilful questioning we aim to develop higher-order thinking skills and a deeper analysis for our children to be able to discuss the works of artists, designers and art and design works.  They will be encouraged to express a balanced and reasoned opinion and recognise that there are alternative perspectives.  We will watch how our children engage with their work, see what they do, listen to what they say and take an interest in what they produce, using talk to introduce and extend technical and critical vocabulary.  We believe there to be a direct correlation between the quality of talk and the quality of children's work. We consider assessment in Art a holistic process, which will occur during every art lesson through conversation with pupils. 

How do we make this happen? 

Pupils will be given the opportunity to explore the visual and tactile elements, materials and processes used in making art, craft and design and the differences and similarities in the work of artists, crafts people and designers in different times and cultures.  We will use a variety of artefacts and pictures to talk informally with children about colour,  shapes and what things are made of and link chosen artists closely to processes and themes and children's interest.  We will develop a rich visual awareness by allowing our children to explore the visual elements of shape, line, pattern, colour , form, space, tone and texture.  These elements will also be explored through short activities designed to scaffold larger creative projects. 

Early Years is where we will ignite the flame of creativity and begin to watch it grow.  A range of materials will be provided daily as part of our 'continuous provision', which will be enhanced and added to, encouraging children to make preferences and take risks in their art work.  Children will explore, use and refine a variety of artistic effects to express their feelings.  They will return to and build on their previous learning, refining their ideas and developing their ability to represent them.  They will have opportunities for collaborative work sharing ideas, resources and ideas.  They will develop their motor skills so that they can use a range of tools competently, safely and confidently.  

In Key Stage One a series of lessons will explore a different creative medium such as drawing, sculpture or painting with a focus on progression of skills.  Lessons will be mainly stand alone and links to a wider school topic will only be made where they are of artistic value.  Occasionally artists will be invited in to work with all the children.  Art lessons will have a skills focus, but are considered part of a creative pathway to an end goal with each child's pathway being lead by their own creativity.  We will form our learning pathways guided by the inspirational visual arts teaching and learning charity Access Art. 

A sketch book will be introduced from Key Stage One for scaffolding larger projects and allowing children to explore with freedom the skills experienced in art lessons.  These shorter activities will be used regularly by teachers to explore the visual elements as part of ongoing continuous provision.  This sketch book will go with the children from Year 1 to Year 2.  Children will be given ownership of these sketch books and teachers will use 'talk' to extend each child's vocabulary and encourage self-evaluation.

How do we know this has made a difference?

At Newdigate school, our children can talk about their own work, work of others and the work of other artists, craft makers and designers and to understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms.  

Children are able to respond to questions about their art work eg. 

  • Tell me about what you are planning / making?
  • What could you try next?
  • Tell me about what you have made? 

Art is tracked using the schools adapted Rainbow Continuum assessment model.  This enables teachers to evaluate how the experiences they provide, have impacted on their children's creativity.  Children's work is displayed and celebrated. 

In God's hands we learn and grow


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