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St Robert Bellarmine Catholic Primary School

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     Art, craft and design at

   St Robert Bellarmine


Art, craft and design embody some of the highest forms of human creativity. A high-quality art and design education should engage, inspire and challenge pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own works of art, craft and design. As pupils progress, they should be able to think critically and develop a more rigorous understanding of art and design. They should also know how art and design both reflect and shape our history and contributes to the culture, creativity and wealth of our nation.



At St Robert Bellarmine, we believe that Art, craft and design embody some of the highest forms of human creativity. A high-quality art, craft and design education should engage, inspire and challenge pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own works of art, craft and design. In line with the aims of the National Curriculum, the art, craft and design curriculum at St Robert Bellarmine inspires in pupils the ability to think critically and develop a more rigorous understanding of art and design that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. We enable our children to develop knowledge and skills that are transferable to other curriculum areas and which can and are used to promote their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. It demonstrates how art and design both reflect and shape our history and contribute to the culture, creativity and wealth of our nation.

In ensuring high standards of teaching and learning in Art, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school. We work hard to ensure that learning is built upon each year, to give our children the opportunity to continually progress. This means that children need to have regular opportunities to explore, use and combine skills through a range of different tasks. Throughout these activities allowing them to explore whilst applying their Art, Craft and Design knowledge at increasing levels of depth. In doing so they should be encouraged to develop an understanding of the interrelated dimensions of art, craft and design and key art vocabulary.


Art is, by nature, an investigative subject, it has the potential to make a significant contribution to children’s development: increasing confidence and self-esteem, developing leadership, team working, concentration and problem-solving skills, and developing identity and improving social cohesion within the school and wider community.


Art, craft and design at St Robert Bellarmine is taught in blocks throughout the year, so that children can achieve mastery and depth in their learning. Teachers have identified the key skills of each theme and consideration has been given to ensure progression across topics throughout each year group and across every child’s journey from EYFS to Year 6.


At the beginning of each topic, children have opportunities to engage in pre-learning activities to allow them to begin to develop their own curiosity surrounding a particular topic. They also have opportunities to discuss what they already know. This informs the programme of study and also ensures that lessons are relevant and take account of children’s different starting points. All children have the opportunity to engage with progressive art and design activities using a variety of media and skills to ensure our children are pushed to reach their full potential. Knowledge organisers are a very important tool in helping children learn and remember new information and transfer this information to their long-term memory. Our children are provided with the knowledge they need at the beginning of a new topic and have opportunities to continually refer back to this throughout the year. Expectations are high and through our planning approach of basic, advancing and deep knowledge activities all children have opportunities to deepen their learning at an individual level.


At St Robert Bellarmine, we ensure that art, craft and design has the same importance given to it as the core subjects, as we feel this is fundamental in enabling all children to gain ‘real-life’ experiences. Our staff are committed to ensuring they dedicate specific time each year to allow them to develop their own subject knowledge and become better artists for the benefit of our children. We plan and implement our approaches to ensure children are getting the most from the subject.


Cross curricular outcomes in art, craft and design are specifically planned for where they are relevant. Key subjects are linked and planned into the long-term curriculum for each year group to ensure topics provide our children with relevant links and context and a more meaningful understanding.  Our art, craft and design lessons involve giving children opportunities to engage in processes as well as celebrating our achievements. We engage in cross curricular activities and involve children in many larger scale projects, such as large scale art, craft and design instalations. At St Robert Bellarmine, class teachers are actively encouraged to always consider how to enrich the learning opportunity for pupils in other curriculum areas through the arts. A curriculum map and medium term plans are kept centrally for reference and monitoring.


At St Robert Bellarmine art, craft and design learning is loved by teachers and pupils across school. Teachers have high expectations as well as children and they strive to reach their full potential with confidence. As children progress throughout the school, they develop a deep knowledge, understanding and appreciation of art, craft and design and its place within the wider artistic context. Art, craft and design at St Robert Bellarmine extends children’s interest and knowledge beyond their immediate experiences, The Visual, Auditory and Kinesthetic approach to teaching and learning is fundamental in all our curriculum provision.

Children will begin to make relevant links from art, craft and design to other curriculum subjects, such as history and geography.  They will develop the ability to be able to compare their work with pupil’s previous work, to be able to select appropriate materials, develop their organisational and collaborative skills, respond to the visual curriculum and be able to make judgements of their own and other’s development.

Assessment is crucial in improving learning. Formative assessment is used regularly to inform teachers of ongoing progress and allows adjustments to be made that reflect the learning needs of all children in our school. Feedback is continually given to children which leads to better outcomes in art, craft and design. In line with our school assessment policy, summative assessment in the form of teacher assessment is carried out at the end of each topic to inform the overall progress made by each child on a yearly basis.


We want the children to have thoroughly enjoyed learning about art, craft and design therefore encouraging them to undertake new life experiences now and in the future and be able to understand the part they play in it. All children in the school will be able to communicate confidently about their art, craft and design learning, skills and knowledge.




Nursery - have been studying the artist Georgia O'Keeffe, they explored using a variety of different media to create their flowers. 


Reception have been studying the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo. First they learnt about the 3 primary colours and how they can be mixed to make the secondary colours. Next they completed a guided drawing of flowers and then went on to paint their flowers mixing colours and tones. Finally they painted a self-portrait, as Frida Kahlo is known as a master of self-portraits.

Year 1

Year 1 studied the artist Sir Peter Blake - the children used the ipads to research designs on the Snowdrop Liverpool Ferry. They then used their ideas to create a pattern design for their own ferry.

Year 2

Year 2 studied the artist australian artist Ken Done - the children looked carefully at some of his self portraits noticing that he used colour to express his emotions and feelings and then they used oil pastels  to produce their own self portraits in the style of Done. The artist also painted scenes of Sydney harbour and the children have produced their own scenes using bright and vibrant colours in his style.


Year 3

Year 3 studied J M W Turner - after studying several of Turner's more abstract paintings where his paintings were full of swirling colours, the children used paints to create their own work in the style of Turner.

Year 4 

Year 4 studied the artist L S Lowry. The children studied perspective and used pastels to create their building and paint to create their figures on their work.

Year 5 

Year 5 studied the artist Thaneeya McArdle - they were inspired to use the tradition of Sugar Skulls as the basis of their artwork and like McArdle they used colour and details to complete their work.

Year 6

Year 6 studied the artist Claude Monet. The children used his impressionist style as an influence and inspiration for their own work. They have immersed themselves in examples of his artwork and discovered that he painted 'en plein air' which means in 'open air.' They therefore decided to paint the image that is outside their classroom. They chose the courtyard, because they look at it each day; they do not always take in the beautiful imagery within it.

The children explored the range of shades and tones that can be created when mixing colours to create a piece of artwork.