St. Agnes' Catholic Primary School

Act justly, love tenderly, walk humbly with your God

Art and Design


Art and Design is a practical and creative subject that engages pupils’ imagination and values originality.  We want all pupils to actively explore their imagination, generate ideas, acquire key skills and apply their judgement.  Pupils will develop their knowledge and understanding as well as their skills.  They learn about the materials and techniques they use and about the world of art, craft and design, recognising the achievements of artists, designers and craftspeople from different times and cultures. 

Pupils are encouraged to express ideas, attitudes and values in their work; communication that pupils have been exposed to from a very early age.  This development of critical and creative thinking is valued and given a high profile throughout the school.  We strive to ensure that all pupils enjoy the creative journey that our Art and Design curriculum provides.  We create confident, independent artists who articulate and value their own and other’s work.



Art and Design is taught as a predominantly discrete subject so that the knowledge, skills and understanding that are necessary to make progress are planned and developed systematically.  Pupils are given sufficient time and exposure to master their skills and opportunities to create learning outcomes. 

Pupils explore a variety of artistic polarities:

  • Traditional skills balanced with experimental work
  • Small scale work should be balanced with large scale work.
  • Reflective evaluation be balanced with active, dynamic work
  • Individual work balanced with group work
  • Two dimensional balanced with three dimensional
  • Study of historical artists balanced with contemporary artists
  • A balance of male and female creative role models


Art and design is taught using a specific and consistent structure.  Initially, pupils take inspiration from artwork/artists to support the generation of ideas for their own work. They then explore and practise the practical skills and techniques involved in each topic; using their sketchbooks to record their observations and to review and revisit ideas before producing their final piece. This sequential sequence is taken in each topic and each discipline is revisited in each key stage, at a progressively deeper level.


Art and design subject specific characteristics, which we expect the children to demonstrate, have been developed and shared with all stakeholders.  These characteristics are:

  • The ability to use visual language skilfully (line, shape, pattern, colour, texture and form)
  • To express emotions, interpret observations and convey insight and promote their individuality
  • The ability to communicate in visual and tactile form
  • The ability to draw confidently adventurously from observation, memory and imagination
  • The ability to explore and invent marks, develop and deconstruct ideas and communicate perceptively through drawing in 2D, 3D and digital media
  • The ability to use their knowledge and understanding to inform, inspire and interpret ideas, observations and feelings
  • The ability to use independence, initiative and originality to develop their creativity
  • The ability to select and use materials, processes and techniques skilfully and inventively in their work
  • The ability to reflect on, analyse and critically evaluate their own work and that of others


Assessment in Art and design takes account of all aspects of pupils’ learning and achievement.  This includes, not only what pupils make, but also how they make it, what skills they acquire and what they know about the tools and material they use.  It also takes account of what they know about the world of art, craft and design which places their own work in the wider cultural context.

We use both formative and summative assessment information in art and design lessons. This is collected through direct observation, discussion with pupils and pupil self-assessment opportunities. Staff use this information to inform their short-term planning and short-term interventions. This helps us provide the best possible support for all of our pupils, including the more able. The assessment milestones for each progress objective have been carefully mapped out and further broken down for each year group (following guidance from N.S.E.A.D.) This means that skills in art and design are progressive and build year on year. 

The four progress objectives are derived from the aims of the National Curriculum:

  • Generating ideas
  • Making
  • Evaluating
  • Knowledge

These four objectives define the conceptual framework which underpins all teaching and learning in art and design and ensures consistency of planning, teaching and assessment