Art Curriculum Rationale
At Gilmour Infant School, we paint, draw, sculpt, sketch, illustrate and create! Art provides a means of exploring a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, line and form to produce pieces of art, influenced by the works of famous artists.
In the Foundation Stage, our youngest artists embark on a creative journey of Expressive Arts and Design through topics which are defined by the interests and experiences of the children. They will be encouraged to use their imagination by dismantling, combining and discarding ideas and materials, experimenting and imitating, to develop their own ideas and produce their own unique pieces of work, both indoors and out, the messier, the better! They will talk about what they have produced, what they like and how they can make it better. They also begin to learn about the ways in which paintings and drawings can capture feelings.
In Key Stage 1, in Year 1, the children start their Art journey by investigating Colour – colour naming, matching, mixing, shades and tints, drawing inspiration from Mondrian and Kandinsky. They then explore techniques for making marks, lines, shapes and forms and learn about Portraits, examining work by a variety of artists. We then study the life of the artist Rousseau and produce pieces of art influenced by his works and techniques he used. In Year 2, the children revisit skills and techniques previously introduced in Year 1, through the topics of Sparks and Flames and Animal Art. They then move onto 3D art and explore sculptures, using the work of a variety of artists as stimuli. At Gilmour Infant School we are all artists!
Starting with the subject content outlined in the National Curriculum Programme of Study, we have developed a curriculum map which ensures coverage and progression across the key stages. Foundation subjects are taught in 2-week blocks. In this way the children can engage and become fully immersed in the topic, making it easier to remember what is being taught and thus embed key learning, vocabulary, knowledge and skills. In our medium-term plans, taken from the Plan Bee Scheme, we set out the learning objectives for each lesson, identifying engaging activities and resources which will be used to achieve them. Each Art lesson will begin by revisiting and consolidating previous learning, ensuring a firm foundation upon which to build. To encourage individual flair and imagination, we set a creative task which each child can access and complete at their own level. Under skilful guidance, clear explanations, modelling, and scaffolding of learning the children become successful, happy learners.
We use a variety of ways to assess attainment in Art. Activities are differentiated by outcome. Every child can access and complete all creative tasks set at their own level of ability. We encourage the children to talk - in pairs, small groups or through class discussion, to share ideas, experiences or suggestions, and comments are noted. The children’s Art journals reflect their own artistic journey and are a constant reminder of previous learning. We also collect photographic evidence. We revisit previous topics to assess if the children have remembered previous learning some time later. Our walls become our own art gallery, where the beautiful art work of all children is exhibited!
We have developed ‘I can . . .’ assessment sheets, with statements taken directly from the National Curriculum Programmes of Study. As each unit of work is covered, we consider the related intended learning, recognise children who are working at or beyond the expected level for their age, as well as identifying the children who need and who will therefore receive support.
Monitoring in Art includes work book scrutinies, lesson observations and/or learning walks, pupil voice interviews / questionnaires in order to ascertain correct curriculum coverage, the quality of teaching and learning as well as the children’s attitudes to learning Art. This information is then used to inform further curriculum developments and provision is adapted accordingly.