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Art & Design

Curriculum Intent

Recovery Curriculum

During term one pupils will be integrated back into the world of learning.  The art programme of study has been designed to recap on previous knowledge and skills and to support pupil’s emotional wellbeing following the Covid 19 lockdown. 



At St Matthias the KS3 art curriculum for the academic year 2020 to 2021 has been designed on a topic basis each term.

The topics are as follows:

Term 1- Recovery curriculum and Microscopic

Term 2- Champions of the Art World

Term 3- Identity

Term 4- Natural Wonders of the World

Term 5-Expressions and Emotions

Term 6- Patterns

The topic curriculum is designed to develop the key concepts of creativity, competence, cultural understanding and critical understanding as well as developing their general knowledge, confidence, independent learning skills, cognitive skills, SMSC and personal, learning and thinking skills. Each topic incorporates promotes diversity and cultural identity as pupils study art and artists from a range of countries and cultures.

Each topic is designed to incorporate opportunities for pupils to undertake activities that will develop the above skills and to ensure provide an ease of integration into the subject of which pupils can participate at any stage of their learning journey at St Matthias Academy.  The topics are designed to allow for dysfluency and can be adapted to differentiate for different types of learners at different stages of learning.

Through the variety of topics delivered pupils are provided with the opportunities to produce creative and dynamic art work, to explore their ideas and record their experiences as well as opportunities to become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques.  There is also a strong focus on literacy within the subject where pupils are encouraged to annotate, evaluate and analyse creative works using the language of art, craft and design.  Pupils are exposed to a wide range of art forms and styles throughout time in order to their awareness of a range of artists and crafts people including the great artists, craft makers and designers.  Pupils learn the historical and cultural influence on the development of art, craft and design.



The focus for key stage 4 pupils is the development of skills and knowledge in order to produce a portfolio of work for AQA GCSE Art and Design including :  Pupils are given a topic on which they build a portfolio of work that evidences work for each of the following GCSE assessment objectives:

  • AO1: Develop ideas through investigations, demonstrating critical understanding of sources.
  • AO2: Refine work by exploring ideas, selecting and experimenting with appropriate media, materials, techniques and processes.
  • AO3: Record ideas, observations and insights relevant to intentions as work progresses.
  • AO4: Present a personal and meaningful response that realises intentions and demonstrates understanding of visual language.

Along with SMSC, there is also a focus on the development of social, moral, spiritual and cultural as well as literacy and personal, learning and thinking skills. The programme of study has been developed to allow students to develop their knowledge and understanding through a variety of learning experiences and approaches, including engagement with sources. This provides opportunities to develop the pupils understanding of the world of art, ability to interpret and understand artworks and to develop art literacy.   Pupils are given the confidence, and knowledge to develop their creative skills as they are given the opportunity to explore a wide range of media, processes and techniques.  A focus on independent learning and the development of independent artist skills are encouraged in order for pupils to develop their own unique style, make reasoned judgements about the development of their work and realise their intentions. The aim is for pupils to present a body of work that evidences work for each assessment objective in line with the exam board requirements. The weighting of the course consists of 60% coursework and 40% exam.  Each component must show coverage of the four assessment objectives and include annotation and evidence of analysing.

The programme of study is designed to enable pupils to transfer their skills and GCSE portfolio of work if they change provision but also enables year 11 pupils remaining at St Matthias Academy to be submitted for both the coursework and exam components within the provision.



Pupils are engaged in the subject by means of exciting, interesting planning and delivering of lessons.  The art room is a nurturing, productive and creative environment which encourages engagement and productiveness.  Pupils are taught according to individual targets and needs and are pupil focused with differentiated teaching and resources developed accordingly.  Pupils are provided with the tools to enable them to complete tasks and activities as independently as possible and they are encouraged to make informed choices about the development of their creative work.  Pupils are given frequent opportunities to explore a range of media, techniques and processes and are actively encouraged to learn from failures and successes within this area therefore developing their resilience and reflective learning ability. Pupils are actively encouraged to develop their own personal style, take risks and express themselves through the medium of art.



Pupils are assessed according to the current GCSE art and design grading system.  Feedback is given regularly through means of verbal and written feedback.  This praises the positives and makes suggestions for areas to develop. Pupils are given feedback for their effort and behaviour within class as this impacts on learning and progression.  Opportunities are provided for pupils to self and peer assess work.  Regular, in depth assessment and feedback of work is completed at the end of every topic for KS3 and this breaks down the areas of assessment to:

  • Recording and development of ideas
  • Exploring
  • Making
  • Practical skills
  • Art literacy
  • Behaviour for learning
  • Effort

KS4 pupils are assessed against the AQA Art and Design assessment criteria.


Therapeutic art

One art therapy session will be delivered to each group on a weekly basis.  The aim of the sessions is for pupils to engage in art activities that promote confidence, wellbeing and social skills in a relaxed and informal setting.  Although sessions are planned, the sessions are fluid and will respond to the pupils needs.  Pupils will have the freedom to select from a range of activities and can choose to work on an independent activity.