Art embodies some of the highest forms of human creativity. At Hollymount School, we aim to engage, inspire and challenge children, equipping them with the knowledge and techniques they need in order to experiment, invent and create their own works of art, craft and design. As children progress, they are able to think critically and develop a more rigorous understanding of Art and key artists.
We believe that a high-quality art education should engage, inspire and challenge our children. We want them to love art and to see it as an opportunity to express themselves throughout the wider subjects of the curriculum.
Sketchbooks provide a non-judgmental space where children can build and improve their techniques, develop their art pieces and reflect upon their creative journey. The language of art, embedded as children’s knowledge and techniques grow, will empower them to express their responses to art and artists with competence. Children leave our school with a positive attitude towards art; being proud of their work and with a resilience to continue to build their knowledge and skills.
Each term, each year group focusses on a different strand of the art curriculum with the aim of building on the knowledge and skills children have accrued continue to embed and evolve. Children will learn about how art, and design, both reflect and shape our history, and contribute to the culture, creativity and wealth of our nation. Throughout the year, children have opportunities to plan and develop their skills and ideas around a topic, working towards their final piece. We look at a variety of techniques including collage, printing, drawing, sculpting and moulding and, painting and we explore and reflect on the work of many different artists as we progress.
At Hollymount School, there is a focus on developing language which enables children to fully express their ideas with the use of subject specific vocabulary; children are taught to critique and evaluate both their own and the work of others, while ensuring they show tolerance and respect. As well as working and developing ideas in sketch books, we like to exhibit art around the school. We want children to be inspired to become artists, craftsmen, sculptors, printmakers or ceramicists.
To ensure high quality teaching takes place at Hollymount School, we plan collaboratively as a Trust to allow professional dialogue to take place and to share experiences and subject knowledge between each year group. Art and Design is planned around the year group’s current themes and builds upon prior learning. The planning carefully follows a structured process which allows artistic knowledge and techniques to be built upon and layered (knowledge, understanding, analysis, application/evaluation and creation). The final creation is then an opportunity for the children to use all of the knowledge and techniques they have developed.
As a school, we celebrate the work of our children by ‘showcasing’ it on display boards around the school. Art display boards showcase a mixture of the learning sequence; the progression in technique development’; ‘pupil voice’; and elements of the stimulus art-work, art theme or artist.
Opportunities to explore and develop themes of Growth Mindset, PSHE and British Values are woven, by staff, throughout the Art planning sequences. Speaking and listening is promoted to ensure all pupils have the opportunity to explore and give an opinion on different artist’s work and how this could be applied to their own creations. Feelings and emotions are explored through artists, their peers and their own work as well as investigating how colour and different techniques can reflect a specific mood or atmosphere.
Austin’s Butterfly is an approach we use when providing specific feedback to children’s artwork, as it provides a clear approach to evaluating, developing and refining their artwork throughout the learning sequence. Year groups showcase this approach on art display boards, illustrating the children’s improved artwork after specific feedback and reflecting their perseverance throughout.
As part of widening our provision, we are always looking for opportunities for children to explore art outside the classroom. Some these opportunities include taking part in competitions such as the Mayor’s Christmas Card Competition and the annual Voice and Visions exhibitions.